The Department of Public Relations in the College of Media & Communication at Texas Tech University recently recognized its top students with its PR Student of the Year awards.
“The Department of Public Relations attracts the best students in the state, and it is important that our top students receive recognition for their hard work,” says Eric Rasmussen, Ph.D., associate professor and interim chair of CoMC's Department of Public Relations.
“Honoring these students with this award is a small way that we say ‘thank you' for doing everything we've asked of them, and more, during their time in our program.”
Randilyn Saenz, a senior public relations major from Three Rivers, Texas, was selected in first place, with Mauricio Lira, a recent graduate and PR major from Stinnett, Texas, and Sydney Moore, a senior public relations major from Round Rock, Texas, both receiving second place in this year's competition.
Sherice Gearhart, Ph.D., associate professor in public relations, was the chair of the scholarship committee in the PR Department.
“We had a tremendous group of applicants this year,” she says. “Among all the applicants, Randilyn best demonstrated how she strives for excellence as a student and represents the department. From her work with RaiderComm, our student-run public relations firm, to her congressional internship in the office of Congressman Joaquin Castro, her experiences highlighted the best of our students.”
Saenz is grateful to represent her department with this recognition.
“It's not been an easy year for anyone so it feels good to be recognized for the hard work in such an honorable way,” she says. “I could not have reached this point without the support of my professors, and they have gone above and beyond for each of their students.”
According to Rasmussen, students self-nominate to enter this annual competition with many entering at the encouragement of individual faculty members.
Student entries are then judged by the PR Department Scholarship Committee (comprised of PR faculty) with criteria that includes academics, service and extracurricular achievements.
The winner receives a $500 scholarship while the two second-place winners each received a $300 scholarship.