Campus Life

UWF communications faculty and students win PR awards

Faculty and students from the University of West Florida were honored at the Florida Public Relations Association (FPRA) annual conference in Naples, Fla., at the association’s Golden Image Awards Aug. 9.

UWF faculty member Rick Scott won the prestigious Doris Fleischman award, which recognizes tireless effort and contributions to the field of public relations.

Scott is one of two faculty members from UWF who have received the award. Eileen Perrigo won in 2006.

“This was very humbling,” said Scott. “The Fleischman award recognizes behind-the-scenes contributions, and there are so many folks in FPRA who work hard behind the scenes on behalf of others. It means a great deal to me to be recognized.”

Additionally, 10 students won an FPRA Award of Distinction this year for their work with Appetite for Life, a local philanthropic food organization. The students, working under the title “Wellspring Public Relations,” provided a comprehensive public relations strategy and renovated Appetite for Life’s current facility.

The students are part of the Public Relations Campaigns class and each year select a non-profit organization to assist in gaining exposure.

“The students in the spring 2011 PR campaigns class worked diligently with the Appetite for Life staff and board members to create an award-winning campaign,” said Perrigo. “It’s a win-win-win opportunity for Appetite for Life, the students and UWF. The Award of Distinction validates this learning opportunity.”

Lindsay Prestemon, the executive director of Wellspring Public Relations, was excited about the award and the work that she and her fellow students accomplished.

“I’m really proud of the way our group handled having an organization that had nonprofit and for-profit sections,” said Prestemon. “I think it posed a challenge that hadn’t been seen before in the previous campaigns classes.”

The project was funded by the International Paper Pensacola Mill. The Appetite for Life offices suffered a fire early Aug. 18. Even though the campaign was complete, several students have volunteered to assist rebuilding the offices.