Success Stories

PR student making national waves

Lisa Travnik

Lisa Travnik discovered her knack for public relations after a high school theater audition turned sour. Now this PR major, Spanish and business minor takes her A-game to a national level.

"When I didn't get the part in the play I took on the role as a producer," she said. "I secured a record number of sponsorships, sold tickets and organized promotional events. I loved it, and it was then I knew this was what I wanted to do."

This year, Travnik was appointed the national vice president of advocacy for the Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA). Her role is to represent the organizations stance on ethical professionalism and promote diversity within the field of public relations. Recently her response to an article regarding ethical integrity was published in Advertising Age.

"We were astonished to read that 60 percent of public relations professionals were paying for editorial placements," she said. "This practice conflicts with the ethical standards of public relations, and the organization felt that a well-read trade publication such as Advertising Age needed to recognize that."

Travnik, now a senior, reflects on her time at Grand Valley and said it was well-spent.

"Grand Valley has allowed me to explore a lot of different options, and the opportunity to work closely with professors is definitely invaluable," she said.

During Travnik's time at Grand Valley, she traveled abroad to Mexico, was last year's recipient of the Hal Walton Scholarship from West Michigan's PRSA chapter, and also participated in a host of various volunteer efforts.

Last summer she turned down a chance to intern for day-time soap opera in Los Angeles for a less glamorous but more hands-on position at global PR firm Porter-Novelli.

by Jazmine Steele

This story was filed with the tags: Awards, Internships, Undergraduate Student