Award honors PR efforts

Courtesy Photo
Courtesy Photo

The Office of University Communications, the public relations unit for The University of Southern Mississippi, received the illustrious Lantern Award from Southern Public Relations Federation during their conference Sept. 14-17 for the Closer Look campaign. 

“The campaign was an advertising campaign targeting key markets and audiences throughout southern Mississippi,” said Brittney Westbrook, manager of marketing for university communications. “It challenged (misconceptions) about The University of Southern Mississippi and south Mississippi in general.” 

University communications used the Closer Look campaign to highlight the facts about the great work being done in the classrooms, in the laboratories and in the community, which Westbrook said might be surprising to some.

According to Westbrook, the Southern Public Relations Federation honored university communications in the short-term campaign category.

A short-term campaign is a plan that lasts no more than six months, manages the organization’s point of view among the demographic in which the organization depends, enlists public support or action to solve problems of general interest and concern, involves public affairs, has employee/internal communication, creates special event programs and uses multiple platforms (e.g., social media) to convey the message, according to SPRF’s website.

“Winning a Lantern Award is external, professional validation, that the work being done by the Office of University Communications is not only on par, but in many cases exceeds the work of not only other universities, but businesses, corporations and agencies,” said Jim Coll, chief communication officer for the Office of University Communications.

Coll said the office will continue sharing the stories of The University of Southern Mississippi as effectively, as loudly and as frequently as possible.