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Become A Community Relations Assistant

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Working As A Community Relations Assistant

  • Getting Information
  • Communicating with Persons Outside Organization
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • Interacting With Computers
  • Thinking Creatively
  • Mostly Sitting

  • Stressful

  • $52,000

    Average Salary

What Does A Community Relations Assistant Do

Public relations specialists create and maintain a favorable public image for the organization they represent. They design media releases to shape public perception of their organization and to increase awareness of its work and goals. 

Duties

Public relations specialists typically do the following:

  • Write press releases and prepare information for the media
  • Respond to information requests from the media
  • Help clients communicate effectively with the public
  • Help maintain their organization's corporate image and identity
  • Draft speeches and arrange interviews for an organization’s top executives
  • Evaluate advertising and promotion programs to determine whether they are compatible with their organization’s public relations efforts
  • Evaluate public opinion of clients through social media

Public relations specialists, also called communications specialists and media specialists, handle an organization’s communication with the public, including consumers, investors, reporters, and other media specialists. In government, public relations specialists may be called press secretaries. In this setting, workers keep the public informed about the activities of government officials and agencies.

Public relations specialists draft press releases and contact people in the media who might print or broadcast their material. Many radio or television special reports, newspaper stories, and magazine articles start at the desks of public relations specialists. For example, a press release might describe a public issue, such as health, energy, or the environment, and what an organization does concerning that issue.

Press releases are increasingly being sent through the Internet and social media, in addition to publication through traditional media outlets. Public relations specialists are often in charge of monitoring and responding to social media questions and concerns.

Public relations specialists are different from advertisers in that they get their stories covered by media instead of purchasing ad space in publications and on television.

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How To Become A Community Relations Assistant

Public relations specialists typically need a bachelor’s degree. Employers prefer candidates who have studied public relations, journalism, communications, English, or business.

Education

Public relations specialists typically need a bachelor’s degree in public relations, journalism, communications, English, or business. Through such programs, students produce a portfolio of work that demonstrates their ability to prospective employers.

Training

Entry-level workers typically begin by maintaining files of material about an organization’s activities, skimming and retaining relevant media articles, and assembling information for speeches and pamphlets. After gaining experience, public relations specialists begin to write news releases, speeches, articles for publication, or carry out public relations programs.

Other Experience

Internships at public relations firms or in the public relations departments of other businesses can be helpful in getting a job as a public relations specialist.

Some employers prefer candidates that have experience communicating with others through a school newspaper or a leadership position in school or in their community.

Important Qualities

Interpersonal skills. Public relations specialists deal with the public and the media regularly; therefore, they must be open and friendly to maintain a favorable image for their organization.

Organizational skills. Public relations specialists are often in charge of managing several events at the same time, requiring superior organizational skills.

Problem-solving skills. Public relations specialists sometimes must explain how a company or client is handling sensitive issues. They must use good judgment in what they report and how they report it.

Speaking skills. Public relations specialists regularly speak on behalf of their organization. When doing so, they must be able to clearly explain the organization’s position.

Writing skills. Public relations specialists must be able to write well-organized and clear press releases and speeches. They must be able to grasp the key messages they want to get across and write them in a short, succinct way to get the attention of busy readers or listeners.

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Community Relations Assistant Career Paths

Community Relations Assistant
Event Coordinator Account Executive Marketing Manager
Director Of Communications And Marketing
9 Yearsyrs
Event Coordinator Executive Assistant Marketing Manager
Regional Marketing Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Event Coordinator Consultant Marketing Manager
Marketing And Operations Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Account Executive Owner Marketing Director
Community Relations Director
8 Yearsyrs
Account Executive General Manager Marketing Director
Director Of Marketing And Public Relations
6 Yearsyrs
Marketing Assistant Editor Public Relations Manager
Manager Of Corporate Communications
7 Yearsyrs
Marketing Assistant Senior Account Executive Marketing Director
Vice President Of Marketing & Communications
12 Yearsyrs
Marketing Assistant Senior Account Executive Communications Director
Director, Corporate Communications
10 Yearsyrs
Community Relations Coordinator Executive Assistant Property Manager
Assistant Director, Communications
5 Yearsyrs
Community Relations Coordinator Executive Assistant Event Manager
Director Of Special Events
5 Yearsyrs
Community Relations Coordinator Community Liaison
Community Relations Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Communications Coordinator Team Leader Assistant Director
Director Of Alumni Relations
5 Yearsyrs
Communications Coordinator Editor Communications Manager
Communications Project Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Communications Coordinator Writer And Editor Staff Writer
Public Information Officer
6 Yearsyrs
Editor Public Relations Manager Public Relations Director
Media Relations Director
5 Yearsyrs
Marketing Coordinator Senior Account Executive Public Relations Director
Public Relations And Communications Director
7 Yearsyrs
Marketing Coordinator Writer And Editor Managing Editor
Publications Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Marketing Coordinator Public Relations Specialist
Media Relations Manager
5 Yearsyrs
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Do you work as a Community Relations Assistant?

Help others decide if this is a good career for them

Average Length of Employment
Public Relations 2.4 years
Top Careers Before Community Relations Assistant
Internship 17.5%
Volunteer 6.9%
Assistant 4.3%
Cashier 2.9%
Secretary 2.6%
Reporter 2.3%
Top Careers After Community Relations Assistant
Internship 4.6%
Consultant 3.9%
Manager 3.9%
Editor 3.5%

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How Would You Rate The Salary Of a Community Relations Assistant?

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Top Skills for A Community Relations Assistant

  1. Community Outreach
  2. Special Events
  3. Press Releases
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Coordinated and participated in community outreach events for informing consumers of the procedures and policies related to the Digital Television transition.
  • Achieved primarily through print communications, special events, media coverage, advertising and community partnerships.
  • Assisted the Rapid's Public Relations team and external media on game days to provide accurate information for press releases.
  • Spearheaded the initiative to establish the City's Downtown Waterfront Entertainment District including working with local businesses and writing the ordinance.
  • Formulate inter-departmental relationships to allow for collaboration with Marketing, Public Relations, Corporate Sponsorship, Ticket Sales and others.

Community Relations Assistant Demographics

Gender

Female

66.8%

Male

25.5%

Unknown

7.7%
Ethnicity

White

62.1%

Hispanic or Latino

16.9%

Black or African American

11.5%

Asian

6.4%

Unknown

3.2%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

58.3%

French

8.3%

Arabic

6.3%

Portuguese

4.2%

Kurdish

2.1%

Chinese

2.1%

Ukrainian

2.1%

German

2.1%

Yoruba

2.1%

Hmong

2.1%

Occidental

2.1%

Mandarin

2.1%

Russian

2.1%

Xhosa

2.1%

Italian

2.1%
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Community Relations Assistant Education

Schools

University of Phoenix

8.6%

University of Minnesota - Twin Cities

6.5%

Liberty University

6.5%

Michigan State University

5.4%

Northwestern University

5.4%

Pennsylvania State University

5.4%

University of Connecticut

5.4%

Canisius College

5.4%

George Washington University

4.3%

Arizona State University

4.3%

Ohio State University

4.3%

Georgetown University

4.3%

Texas A&M University

4.3%

University of Washington

4.3%

Chapman University

4.3%

DePaul University

4.3%

University of Houston

4.3%

University of Kansas

4.3%

Boston University

4.3%

Soka University of America

4.3%
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Majors

Communication

17.5%

Business

16.6%

Kinesiology

10.3%

Marketing

6.3%

Management

5.8%

Public Relations

5.6%

Journalism

5.6%

Psychology

4.7%

Political Science

3.6%

Graphic Design

2.9%

Health Care Administration

2.5%

Social Work

2.2%

Education

2.2%

Sociology

2.2%

Nursing

2.0%

English

2.0%

Liberal Arts

2.0%

Human Resources Management

2.0%

Counseling Psychology

2.0%

Elementary Education

1.8%
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Degrees

Bachelors

55.1%

Masters

21.2%

Other

10.3%

Associate

7.6%

Certificate

3.1%

Doctorate

1.8%

License

0.4%

Diploma

0.4%
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