Investing in yourself while a working professional is a tall order. For Kim Brown, Director of Public Relations at Cook Children's Health Care System in Fort Worth, Texas investment looked like getting her master's degree at the Texas Tech College of Media & Communication and becoming the President-elect for the Greater Fort Worth chapter of Public Relations Society of America.
The New Mexican native received her undergraduate degree in Electronic Media and Communication now known as Creative Media Industries from Texas Tech College of Media & Communication in 2008, working in various on-campus organizations to hone her media skills.
The journalist by trade moved industries in 2015 after being a news producer across the state of Texas and New Mexico. Brown decided to go back to school and specifically Texas Tech pursuing her master's degree in Strategic Communication and Innovationin 2020.
Pictured: Kim Brown works on a strategic communication plan for Cook Children's Health Care System.
“As a working professional, I know the dilemma that one can feel when trying to decide whether to go back to school, especially for busy public relations and communications professionals. Our schedules are all over the place,” Brown said. “You just never know what's going to happen. It can be hard to even plan for your personal life, much less to take on something like a master's program.”
While at Texas Tech, she said she enjoyed the number of course electives offered; allowing her to customize her degree and take electives that were intriguing to her.
“There were really a lot of options when it came to electives and I know there was a class on podcasting, there were classes on social media, there were all sorts of different avenues that students could take,” Brown said. “I really appreciated the variety that was available to me, and that it's helped me prepare for the track that I am on in my career. Anybody could tailor (their classes) to their own path.”
Watch our interview with Kim Brown on Vimeo.
The current President-elect and 2024 President of the Greater Fort Worth Chapter of the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) said the organization has allowed her to continue learning even after completing her higher education.
“PRSA is such a valuable organization for people in our field. It's given me the opportunity not only to network with other public relations professionals here in Dallas, Fort Worth, but also nationwide.” Brown acknowledged. “It's given me people to call on and lean on whenever I may have questions or need support in certain areas.”
Pictured: Kim Brown and Cook Children's Health Care System communications team win first place for Feature Story at the 2022 PRSA Anvil Awards in New York City.
“I'm staying on top of the latest trends, what's going on in the industry, making sure that I know who's working on certain projects in the area and who I can call in for support when needed. So, it's been a valuable experience for me,” Brown added.
With a full time job and master's classes, Brown found the Texas Tech College of Media & Communication Graduate Program gave her the ability to continue thriving at Cook Children's Health Care System while succeeding in classes.
“My advice for people (debating on graduate school) is to look for a program that works for you,” Brown advised. “For me, that (program) was Texas Tech because I could do everything on my own time. It was very flexible, and I felt like I got a really great education but on my terms.”
Pictured: Kim Brown receives her MA in Strategic Communication & Innovation in 2020.
Learn more about our Master of Arts in Strategic Communication & Innovation Graduate Program.