PRSA Silicon Valley, part of the nation’s largest professional organization serving the public relations and communications community, raised $50,000 for a new diversity and multicultural scholarship—more than doubling its $20,000 fundraising goal in less than two days.
Established in 2020, the PRSA Silicon Valley Diversity and Multicultural Scholarship annually assists and recognizes students for outstanding academic achievement and commitment to the practice of public relations. The goal of this scholarship is to increase the diversity of the future profession leading to a more representative community of Bay Area public relations and communications professionals. Reaching the $20,000 goal means that the fund will be converted into an endowment used to provide scholarships for many, many years to come. Exceeding it means that even more good can be done for more individuals in need.
“The murder of George Floyd was a wake-up call for many last summer in the Silicon Valley community. Many companies made commitments to help end racial injustice and our Chapter agreed that we could all be doing more to support. This scholarship is one way we can create the future we want to see—a PR industry representative of all peoples,” said Vanessa Yanez, PRSA Silicon Valley President. “While the verdict reached in the trial of Derek Chauvin is a poignant reminder for all of us that change is possible, making that change is up to each of us. If we all do our part, we can create a more equitable future for everyone.”
PRSA Silicon Valley was able to meet our goals and fund our scholarship in large part due to the generous contributions of Bay Area communications agencies. 25 local and global firms came together to work towards a more diverse and multicultural future for the Silicon Valley PR community. In a true display of leadership, BOCA Communications and Method Communications even went so far as to offer donation matching for employees, demonstrating their commitment to a culture of giving and inclusion.
“Racial inequities have sadly been a part of this country’s narrative for far too long, including in our field of public relations. As a first-generation college graduate of Mexican descent, who also received scholarship support, it’s humbling to have the opportunity to give back to a community that has given to me,” said Jazmin Eusebio, PRSA Silicon Valley DEI Chair. “It has been inspiring to see the united effort from the PR community to break down one of the barriers students of historically marginalized and oppressed backgrounds face on the road to pursuing a career in this industry.”
While we have met our initial fundraising goal, the more money we invest now the greater the long-term impact of the program. Agency donors to-date include:
- Aircover Communications
- Bateman Agency
- Bhava Communications
- BOCA Communications
- Breakaway Communications
- Clarity PR
- Edelman Bay Area
- Engage PR
- Gravitate PR
- Highwire PR
- The Hoffman Agency
- Hunter & Bard
- Inkhouse PR
- Karbo Communications
- Method Communications
- Mighty PR
- Mindshare PR
- Mission North
- Offleash PR
- Praytell Agency
- Rob Roy Consulting
- Spark PR
- VSC Consulting
PRSA Silicon Valley is committed to providing professional development opportunities that are reflective and inclusive of our society’s segments. Our goal is to provide communications programming that encompasses various ideas, perspectives, and cultural backgrounds.
- Join as a Member: PRSA is a network of thousands of public relations and communications professionals in local and regional communities around the world. Members receive access to a suite of tools, content and events that foster professional development and enhance career growth.
- Join the Board: The PRSA Silicon Valley Board of Directors provides a network designed to build deep professional connections through mentorship, collaboration and networking. For more information about joining the board, contact Vanessa Yanez.
- Partner With Us: Want to build brand leadership while capturing the attention of journalists, potential clients or prospective employees? Consider sponsoring a #FridayForum and other 2021 events. For more info, visit the Sponsorships page on our website or email PRSA-SV Board Members Ellie Javadi or Scott Thornburg.
- Become a Mentor: We aim to encourage, educate, and engage with diverse communications professionals while affecting change and fostering growth in the public relations industry. For more information contact our mentorship team.
- Speak at a #FridayForum Event: Since launching in April 2020, #FridayForum has welcomed industry leaders and tackled issues of importance to PR professionals such as recruitment, career development, diversity and inclusion, consumer trust, and public health. If you would like to attend and/or speak at a future #FridayForum, contact Karen Smyth.
- Join the Agency Advisory Board: Enhance your connection to the communications agency community by engaging with senior executives from other Bay Area firms. To nominate someone for the advisory board, contact Ellie Javadi.
>>> DONATE NOW to invest in future Bay Area public relations talent.