..Looks to retool the program going forward to meet changing communications requirements
C&F Porter Novelli, the trusted business advisor and leader in strategic communications in West Africa has graduated the 2015 Class of interns from the Company’s 2015 PR Fundamentals Programme. This year, three graduates received their certificates from the Programme; Stella Olaokun, Folakemi Olabanji and Ilabeshi Gabriel and they constitute the graduating class of 2015.
During the one year internship, the interns gained significant exposure to the various facets of public relations, including business strategy, and business development. They were also educated on the fundamental skills of public relations, including copy writing, media monitoring, media relations, digital communications, special event planning, new business presentations, strategy planning, research and more.
The interns as part of their training also functioned as integral members of the operations department at C&F Porter Novelli and in the process, they obtained mentored hands-on experience with various client accounts and specialist teams. “A major outcome of your graduation is that you are now armed with industry knowledge, technical know-how and a better understanding of what it takes to be an effective communications expert”, said Mr. Nn’emeka Maduegbuna, Chairman and CEO of C&F Porter Novelli, to the graduating class.
Nigel Sonariwo, the new General Manager and Chief Operating Officer at the company, urged the new graduates to always have a “can-do” spirit and attitude towards their new craft and encouraged them to constantly seek new ways to improve on effectively communicating within the increasing interconnected world that we live in.
To meet the increasing demands placed on media communications companies to break through with their messaging to consumers in an always on 24/7 news cycle and interconnected world, Mr. Maduegbuna announced a retooling of the company’s internship programme for 2016.
In his words: “We are taking some time to retool our internship programme to have our interns even better prepared for the new communications road ahead. We will be working closely with industry leaders to come up with even more robust ways to reconfigure the internship programme and allow us to continue to graduate well prepared classes of young PR gurus, ready and able to carry us further into the millennium.”
“In response to what our customers want, we need to better understand the new tools and new methods available to us, in order to effectively communicate on behalf of our clients with our target audiences. With the “Always On” 24/7 news cycles, we can no longer conduct PR in the old traditional sense of the word and keep our clients happy”, he said.
Maduegbuna added that clients today want to be heard across several communications platforms, with PR firms delivering multiple messages to consumers, even as clients also want PR professionals to measure the effectiveness of all communications efforts; all at the same time. “From online media websites, to cable and satellite TV, to social media, to the new print and podcast mediums; it is clear that there are so many new ways to disseminate information and communicate with your audience. Keep in mind that each message medium has a slightly different purpose and functionality as well (one size no longer fits all)”.
C&F Porter Novelli commenced the PR Fundamentals initiative in 2011 to identify and foster talent within the ranks of young Nigerians and equip the Nigerian Public Relations industry within a new generation of skilled media specialists. The programme was introduced against the challenge of a deficit of well qualified Public Relations talent in the country at the time, making it difficult to staff and develop the industry. In doing so, the Programme strives to be an industry guarantor of excellence, in training entry-level employees for years to come.
Over the last five years, a total of eleven interns have been trained through the programme and have gone on into the industry as communications specialists beyond the internship programme. The programme serves as part of C&F Porter Novelli’s thought leadership initiative, which is committed to help address the shortage of communications talent in the industry. Key industry publications and media concerns have also taken a keen interest in the programme in recognition of its strength as a leading beacon of light for Public Relations in Nigeria.
For her part, Ms. Victoria Nwoji, Head of Human Resources at the company said that prospective interns would be duly informed as to their career options on the recommencement of the programme after the retooling.