PRO Day 2018

Find Your #PRStrong

WHAT: The Public Relations Society of America Southeastern Wisconsin Chapter, the largest professional PR organization in Wisconsin with over 200 members, is hosting a great event for college students to learn more about careers in PR/Marketing.

WHEN: Friday, April 20, 2018 from 11:30 am – 5 pm
11:30 am: Networking with Professionals
12-1:30 pm: Luncheon with Guest Speaker – Sharon Barbano, Head of Public Relations, Saucony will be speaking on “Find Your #PRStrong.”

In the field of communications, it may seem as if there are a million paths to pursue. What is important is to find the path that empowers and excites you every day. Learn to find your strong by working hard, adapting and growing.

1:45-2:45 pm: Young Pros Panel Discussion lead by Big Shoes Network entitled, “How We Got Our First Professional Jobs: Dos and Don’ts.”
Panelists will include:
-Liz Siepmann, Society for Immunotherapy of Cancer (SITC)
-Natalie Jaeger, EPIC Creative
-Ashley Kast, Z2 Marketing
-Sarah Gentil, Cramer Krasselt
-Emily Bultman, HSA Bank
3–3:45 pm: Tour of Celtic Ad Agency (A bus will transport participants)
4-4:45 pm: Tour of Summerfest’s Headquarters  (a bus will transport participants)

WHERE: Italian Community Center, 631 E Chicago St, Milwaukee, WI 53202 (free parking in back)

Sharon Barbano, Head of Public Relations for Saucony and Wolverine Boston, is an industry leader in strategic communications and sports marketing with more than 30 years of experience in entrepreneurial and corporate leadership positions. At Saucony, Barbano has applied her passion as a former world-class runner to communicate the brand’s award-winning, performance running technologies while inspiring others to experience the transformational power of running.

Barbano is also an executive and personal development coach, having trained with the Coaches Training Institute, an affiliate of Harvard Medical School. She delivers a high-performance coaching model that helps clients tap into their life’s purpose, possibilities and presence.

To read more about Barbano visit:

MENU: Chicken Marsala with Mushroom Sauce and Mashed Potatoes Dessert: Cookies and Cream Torte

COST: $15 for PRSSA student chapter members
$25 for PR/Marketing general students



Students who attended  prior PRO Days have said they left energized and feeling positive about their future careers in PR.  Please continue to check this page for new details about this great day for students. If you have have questions regarding this event, please contact Heidi Fendos, our PRO Day event planner at 414-778-0766 or

The 2018 PRO Day is being sponsored by:

Big Shoes Logo (Large)




2017 PRO Day Recap

The 2017 PRO DAY for college  students was sponsored by Big Shoes Network  on April 21, 2017 at the ICC.

It was entitled, “Learn about Connected Living & the Internet of Things,
Meet PR Pros, Sharpen Your Resume and Tour Some Really Fresh PR Venues”

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe event featured Brandi Boatner of IBM speaking on Connected Living & the Internet of Things. Students gained awareness of the connected living era and the IoT, they disocvered the  potential of the IoT for marketing and communications, learned how to leverage the IOt and explored how IOT, when coupled with social media will allow communications professionals to identify and take advantage of emerging trends.

After Brandi’s presentation student got to network with professionals and have their resume’s critiqued. The day concluded with students being able to go on two tours. They could choose from four options: Core Creative, B+L, Skylight Music Theatre or 88 Nine Radio Milwaukee.

The 2017 PRO Day was sponsored by:

Big Shoes Logo (Large)






The 2015 PRO Day for college students was sponsored by Eisner Creative Foundation (ECF) and Big Shoes Network , and was held on Friday, April 17 at the Marquette Student Union.

The event featured speaker  Rob Biesenbach, who spoke on: Unleashing the Power of Storytelling To Build Trust and Influence audiences 

rob biesenbach

Takeaways included:

  • The important science behind the power of storytelling
  • Three key ingredients necessary for every successful story
  • Key elements that elevate good stories to greatness
  • A simple process for finding great stories among your customers and other audiences
  • Tips to help you bring out the best stories in others
  • Advice for cutting the clutter from your stories for greater impact
  • Pointers on making your stories more visual and evocative
  • Performance tips to help you and your clients deliver stories more effectively

Following the luncheon, there was a Resume Critiques and Tips Workshop followed by two break  out sessions which covered: Social Media Management with panelists Rick Stoner from Bader Rutter, Jeremy Ross from Milwaukee Tool and Chelsey Orlikowski from Core Creative; Internal/Employee Communications with panelists Betsy Berens from GE Healthcare, Chantel Kuczmarski from Nelson Schmidt and Brian McKaig from the United Way of Greater Milwaukee and Waukesha County; PR’s Role in Branding with panelists Lisa Ehlke from Zizzo Group, Don Klein from Aurora and Annie Holschuh from BVK; and Business to Business PR with Mike Stefaniak from Hanson Dodge, Fraser Engerman from Johnson Controls and Heather Markovich from Core Creative.




On April 11, 2014, the PRSA Southeastern Wisconsin Chapter and our event sponsors, Eisner Creative Foundation (ECF) and Big Shoes Network , were proud to host 78 students from UW-Whitewater, UW-Milwaukee, Marquette University, UW-Eau Claire, UW-Oshkosh, UW Green Bay, UW-Stevens Point and Carroll University for our annual  1/2 day PRO DAY event for PR students. Students spent the afternoon learning about the PR industry in southeastern Wisconsin and what it takes to become a successful young professional in it.

The event was held at the Milwaukee Hilton in Downtown Milwaukee  and the program included:
11:30 a.m.-Noon: Networking

natestpierreNoon-1:30 p.m.: Attending the PRSA Monthly Luncheon with along PR professionals and hearing special guest speaker Nate St. Pierre talking about “Activating the Online Community to Promote Change”

1:45-2:30 p.m.: A Resume Critiques and Tips Workshop overseen by volunteers from PRSA’s Young Pros group

2:45 – 3:45 p.m.: Breakouts: Corporate Careers with corporate panelists from Manpower, Kohler Company and Johnson Controls or Agency Careers with panelists from STIR,  Mueller Communications and Johnson Direct.

4-5 p.m.: Breakouts: Government/Public Sector Careers with panelists from Milwaukee Common Council, Milwaukee County Transit anPro Day 2014 014resizedd Wisconsin Department of Tourism and Nonprofit Careers with panelists from the Salvation Army, Boys & Girls Club of Greater Milwaukee and Independence First