President's Message: Why no APR-tite for an APR??

I know we're still in 2010, but I've already made a New Year's resolution for 2011 - and that is to attain my APR!

For those of you who are not familiar with what an APR is; it's short for Accreditation in Public Relations and is the defining certification from PRSA that you are a public relations professional. Of course you don't need an APR to work in the PR industry; just like you don't need a CPA to be an accountant, but it does serve as a confirmation to the public and your peers that you've reach the top level of your profession.

Just recently - with the help of our South Florida Assembly delegates; Tim Dodson, Georgina Gonzalez-Robiou and Mike Gibaldi, delegates across the country, attending the PRSA national convention in Washington DC, reaffirmed the inclusion of only those who have become APR's to serve at the organization's national level. This was a measure the Miami Chapter Board unanimously supported. Why? Because we want to encourage all our chapter members to become APR's; and allowing it to be an optional goal for PRSA national office holders would diminish the value of the APR seal. Apparently PR professionals from around the country felt the same way about the value of attaining this level of professionalism.

Is it a tough test to pass? Yes, but it's very doable! Charlotte Donn from the YMCA passed the test a few months ago, becoming our latest APR from the Miami Chapter - joining 33 others, but we want many more. We want to promote the worth of an APR and make it goal for all our Miami Chapter peers.

In 2011 we are making it easier for you to pass the APR test. Our accreditation committee has patterned our Miami Chapter APR track after the successful one that produces about 10-12 new APR's a year in Tampa. It'll be more of a "hands on" approach and there will be more involvement from those who have passed the APR test, so those who will be taking the test will have a frame of reference of what they can expect.

If you want an APR, this is the year to do it!

Having an APR after your name will make a difference for you professionally. In so many ways it's well worth your time.

If you haven't made a New Year's resolution to enter into the quest for an APR in 2011, join me; it's the best thing we can do as PR professionals to further our careers and tell everyone that we are at the top of our game.

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