Monday, January 09, 2006

Getting the word out.............

I never realized that a lot of my educational background and professional experiences would come to be such a great asset in my crusade to get the word out about mental illness and to try to remove the stigma. It's almost like it happened "intentially" - not the depression, but my experiences, both educational and life experiences - that have assisted in generating more press for the cause and helping to let people know that they are not alone!

My B.A. is in Communication Studies (and if you ask any of my friends; once I get talking, it's very hard to shut me up!); and my M. Ed. (Master's in Education) is in Sport Management. My life experiences have been those working game-days and events such as both Manchester United tours (which included other teams such as Celtic, Barcelona and many more!), two Women's World Cups, two CONCACAF Gold Cups, numerous individual international matches, and seven years experience on game-day staff of the MetroStars of Major League Soccer.

Most of these experiences have included working with the media. Most importantly, it has included how to develop positive press through having good working relationships with the media covering whatever event I was working (and obviously wanted covered).

Regardless, I never realized that just watching people write press releases (and knowing how to write them); looking for "spins" to certain stories that may be more newsworthy; contacting other public relations people and knowing the proper protocol; it's amazing how much I know (when in reality I guess I didn't give myself enough credit).

Funny how God works though. I have numerous years experience working public relations events and know the "routine" - however it has been primarily as a result of my passion of soccer. Almost like God Himself wanted me to have a vested interest in learning the trade and He knew soccer was the vehicle by which it could be done.

This also happened in working FOR Him at my church; where I learned how to work with the public and such. When I really come to think about it; it's not just interesting, but fascinating. Even more fascinating is the ability to use the knowledge gained in soccer and at the church to help improve the lives of other people by properly getting the word out - and maintaining good ties - with the media.

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