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What Can You Do With a Public Relations Major?

Job titles for public relations majors include marketing manager, speech writer, event coordinator, lobbyist, press secretary and media planner. Job opportunities vary depending upon what degree is held. For example, those holding a graduate degree may find work in management positions.

Job Options for Public Relations Majors

Public relations majors can find employment in a number of settings, including professional services companies, nonprofit organizations, government agencies and educational institutions. A degree in public relations can lead to a variety of job opportunities, including work as a public relations specialist, marketing or event coordinator, media planner, marketing assistant or account executive. Those with several years of experience or a master's degree are more likely to work in positions as public relations managers, fundraising managers, marketing managers, marketing communications directors and directors of investor relations.

Salaries for Public Relations Careers

According to PayScale.com, median salaries for public relations-related careers as of January 2016 were:

  • Account executive - $48,984
  • Marketing assistant - $35,163
  • Event coordinator - $38,491
  • Public relations specialist - $45,270
  • Marketing coordinator - $40,528
  • Marketing manager - $61,253
  • Public relations manager - $61,193

Job Outlook

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the number of jobs for public relations (PR) specialists was predicted to grow 6% between 2014 and 2024. During this time, employment is expected to increase by 7% for public relations managers and fundraising managers. The increased use of social media is expected to improve job prospects for PR specialists. PR managers with experience working at companies with significant media exposure may have the best competitive advantage, while fundraising managers with a master's degree in philanthropic studies may have the best opportunities for employment.

Coursework in a Public Relations Program

Typical coursework for public relations majors focuses on such topics as media ethics and law, campaign planning, advertising, multimedia storytelling, public speaking, journalism, and public relations writing.

Writing courses are important because graduates usually hold jobs that require a great deal of writing. These positions may require employees to compose press releases, campaign speeches, newsletters, public service announcements and media alerts.

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