[By Tara Anderson]

As we prepare to start our own careers, the public relations students at Sheridan College continue to be inspired and motivated by industry professionals. So far, our journey has been shaped by the part-time faculty and industry professionals like Lauren Tedesco, Kate Taylor and Denni Freedman. Naturally, we were eager to meet another new face at Sheridan – Amanda Tran.

Amanda Tran’s story is particularly interesting because, like the students she teaches today, her PR career had humble beginnings in Sheridan’s PRCC program. As cliché as it may sound, she offers her students invaluable advice on staying true to who you are. While we all have skills that we can learn, what sets you apart is “you.” Transparency is essential to good PR and it is important to remember that it begins with us.

Her second piece of advice is to network and maintain the bonds that you build. You will be surprised how much joy and ease it will bring to you both professionally and personally. She has admittedly found it to be the reason for her success and fulfilment in her work.

The program at Sheridan not only gave her the exposure to interview with and subsequently work for a top PR agency, but also whet her appetite for continued learning by paving the way towards an international Masters of Professional Communications program at Edith Cowan University (ECU), Perth, Australia. While she was working at an agency, Amanda’s passion for travel, adventure and learning encouraged her to pursue her Masters of Communications halfway across the world despite suggestions that it was not necessary for her at the time.

Amanda seems to have done it all, from enjoying success in the fast-paced competitive atmosphere of an agency at Hill+Knowlton Strategies, the corporate culture at TD Bank, experience working with the government at the Region of Peel, and now as the communications manager of a non-profit– ORCA. She has come full circle back to where it all started for her, teaching part-time at Sheridan College. Her insight serves as a reminder to an essential part of PR– transparency.

(Photo by Tara Anderson)