It has been four years in the making, but I’m about to graduate college. Let me just say this, don’t EVER dismiss the difficulty of gaining a degree. I will always salute someone who has one. It has not been easy to do in four years. Not easy mentally, emotionally, or physially. Consider this: After two years, I decided I wanted to be a career firefighter, which had little to do with social studies education. So, I changed my major to history- also, very little to do with the fire service. However, I’ve done it, I finished it and can almost say I have that piece of paper that says Bachelor of Science in History from Indiana State University. You betcha I’ll frame that thing and hang it over my mantle.

Luckily, I had a few people make me stay with it. My dear mother, grandma, and future Mrs. Seymour made me do it, and for that, I thank them. In four years, I’ve moved from home into a firehouse, lived at said firehouse for three years, been engaged, been hired as a part-time firefighter 100 miles away, gone through full-time processes, been promoted at my home department, been to 18 MLB ballparks, and stayed full-time at Indiana State, all while maintaining some sort of sanity.

It has been helluva four years, perhaps the best four of my twenty-two years. Not perhaps, definitely the best four. I’m getting married in a month and a half, and will be embarking on the next chapter. However weird it is to say, I’ll be out of college. Hell, I think I might even miss Indiana State… only part of it. Now I have to go present my last final and work on independent study class due in May. Not quite over, but I can smell it.

All I can say now is bring it on world, Mrs. Seymour and I are ready.

I may be off my rocker, but I doubt it.

Thanks for reading,

Levi.

 

Growing Up

 

 

Course Takeaways

Posted: April 21, 2013 in Weekly Blog Posts

My enrollment in Communications 269 this semester has been my first exposure to public relations. I am a history major and took this class as an elective, and I must admit, I underestimated to workload of those in public relations. 

I am not pursuing a job in PR, but if I were, I learned a few things:

1. Networking/exposure is EVERYTHING. One doesn’t have to be the most qualified, rather needs to have the most name recognition in order to land a job.

2. Don’t be afraid of technology and social media. I set up a professional Twitter, LinkedIn  and a blog. I plan to continue blogging and to share it on other social media sites such as my Facebook and my personal Twitter.  

3. Don’t be a hermit. If you’re not a people person, you’re not very likely to make it in public relations. Don’t laugh, I ran across some poor attitudes and unapproachable people who expected to make in in this line of work. 

To my last point, Ms. Jennifer Mullen personifies what it means to be a public relations professional. She was up at all hours of the night updating class pages, answered my every inquiry in a timely manner, and prepared her class for the realities of life in PR. Connect with her on LinkedIn and Twitter.

This is my last required blog, but like I said, I plan to continue blogging about fairly relevant items. Time will tell.

I may be off my rocker, but I doubt it.

Thanks for reading,  

Levi.

 

 

  

Evaluating PR Campaigns

Posted: April 15, 2013 in Weekly Blog Posts

The effective evaluation and measurement of a Public Relations campaign is of the utmost importance. In short, the most important reason to evaluate a campaign is to determine a company’s profit; or return of investment. The bottom line is to make money. However, there are other reasons as well. According to http://www.impactpr.net/evaluating-pr-marketing-campaigns/, evaluations are performed to determine accountability, determine outcomes, and comply with external standards, among other things. 

An effective evaluation is not the only important campaign tool. Measurement in PR is determining if the goals were achieved, rather than only measuring success. Measurement solidifies the importance of goals in a PR campaign. If there are no goals to strive for, then the entire campaign might as well be for not. 

Right now, I am involved in a PR campaign for The Caring Community Foundation. Our goals are to raise awareness for the organization and provide a successful fundraiser; one that benefits both the foundation and the community. Visit here for how you can be involved in both. 

Thanks for reading, Levi.

 

 

Pre-Plan for Disaster

Posted: April 8, 2013 in Weekly Blog Posts

Communication and pre-planning are perhaps the two most important keys to mitigating natural disasters such as tornadoes, floods, earthquakes, hurricanes, etc. This major tornado in Henryville, Indiana in March 2012 displayed why it is so vital. 

The tornado required contributions from all mediums of communications. Certainly, the local  television and radio networks offered advanced watches and warnings of a major tornado event. Without this pre-planning, the death toll would have been much higher. Following the storm, however, is when the real pre-planning for disaster took effect. 

The Indiana State Emergency Operations Center (EOC) immediately took action and dispatched respective task forces from around the state. The Indiana Task Force 7 was dispatched only a few days following the event.

The state EOC was designed to mitigate natural disasters in the state and provide for structured communications and emergency response. The EOC called upon Task Force 7 to provide incident command and to coordinate logistical, finance, and planning portions of the disaster. Keep in mind, most of the incident commanders were training prior to the incident so it was easy to implement procedures already rehearsed. 

It cannot be understated how important the crisis communication plan was for the successful coordination and mitigation of the Henryville, IN tornado. The leaders and authorities on the front lines provided the needed leadership and guidance to lead the way. All organizations and agencies with the possibility for disaster (all of them) should take not. 

I may be off my rocker, but I doubt it. 

Thanks for reading, 

Levi. 

 

Image

Did anybody watch the Pacers this past week? I understand if you didn’t, as they were on a four game west coast swing with stops in Houston, Dallas, Phoenix, and Los Angeles. Guess what, they won all four in convincing fashion. (Save the three point win in LA last night.) 

These Pacers are good, with a chance to be really good. At 48-27, they’re fighting the New York Knicks for second seed in the east that could potentially set up an eastern conference finals showdown with the Miami Heat. Nobody would expect a win; I’m not sure I would myself. 

My point is, I’ve had more fun watching the ’12-’13 Pacers than I have at any time since the 2000 team’s run to the NBA Finals. Roy Hibbert is a softy, but still a brute in the post. Paul George is a budding superstar; long and a capable defender, George Hill and Lance Stephenson command the backcourt, and David West solidifies the Pacers’ physical presence. I’m not saying they will beat the Heat in a seven game series, but I think it will be the toughest match-up they could face.

Only seven games remain, so if you’re and Indiana basketball fan, take notice and turn on Fox Sports Midwest when the Blue and Yellow Menace play. They’re going to be a factor in the playoffs, and hopefully offer the City of Indianapolis a run at another championship. 

I may be off my rocker, but I doubt it. 

Thanks for reading,

Levi.

 

 

 Image

By now, it has been well-documented how practical maintaining a blog is. It can offer one free exposure to potential employers and offer an outlet for social media “friends” to get to know the blogger. I believe one’s personality can really be portrayed through a blog. 

Here are a few tips to effective blogging, via Hudson Horizons:

1. Establish Authority: Don’t blog about things you don’t know. Unless it is an open opinion, and you make that clear, you’re making yourself vulnerable to sounding ignorant and uneducated. Nobody likes know-it-all-blogger posting about healthcare based off one Obama interview: 

2. Industry Interaction: Potential bosses will likely give you a closer look if they have read your blog and see you’ve had a previous though or two on what he/she may hire you for. Don’t be shy to post on other blogs and interact with other industry professionals. 

3. Increase Your Traffic: If I have a blog I want people to read, I am sure to share it on Facebook and Twitter. I have a larger presence there, so it makes sense. 

Overall, blogging is new and some people are hesitant to publish. However, with a few tips one can be well on their way to building an effective blog. 

I may be off my rocker, but I doubt it. 

Thanks for reading,

Levi. 

 

 

 

I’ve filled out a bracket since 7th grade. That’s almost half of my 22 years on planet Earth. I used to think college basketball was the purest sport. I said players worked the hardest and put their heart and soul into every game. However, over the last two to three years I’ve found myself cheating on my beloved college hoops. 

After the Malice at the Palace on November 19, 2004 (that’s from memory), I told myself I’d never be a fan of the NBA again. I remember vividly listening to Mark Boyle and Slick do a play-by-play of Pacers players in the stands throwing punches at spectators. That’s when I turned to the college game in earnest. I remember well Sean May and North Carolina killing in 2005, Joakim Noah and Al Horford leading Florida to back-to-back titles in ’06/’07, Mario Chalmers hitting the game winner over Derrick Rose’s Memphis Tigers in 2008, and Psycho Tyler Hansbrough giving UNC another title in ’09. Heck, my best sports memory thus far was thanks to the college game. The 2010 Final Four in Indianapolis featured the hometown Butler Bulldogs versus mighty Duke. If Gordon Hayward hit this half-court shot at the buzzer… I don’t know what would have happened but it would have been special. That championship game, HIGH in the upper deck of Lucas Oil Stadium, with my grandpa is easily my best memory of live sports. 

Then came 2011, when Butler repeated and shot about 16% in the title game while scoring 41 points and losing to UCONN. Then last year, the dirty Wildcats of Kentucky led by the oft-shady John Calipari won the title. That punctuated the problem. I can’t keep up. That whole Kentucky team is in the pros, and they were freshmen!

Anymore, I can’t keep who is who straight in the college game. I know the Big Ten is stacked, physical, and mired in 43-40 final scores a lot of the time. I know the ACC and the Big East is getting restructured, and I know there are still athletes taking the one-and-done route to the greener pastures and larger paychecks of the NBA. The college game just doesn’t seem as pure to me anymore. 

As it stands currently: I’m more locked in to the NBA. I never thought I’d say it. The Pacers are back to relevancy, Lebron James and the Heat are perhaps the greatest team ever, and the Thunder and Spurs in the west are going to be the ones to put an end to it. As for the 2013 NCAA bracket, there are a bunch of schools I’ve never heard of playing major teams I don’t know much about. So yeah, I’ll pay $5 and get in a small pool, but I may have to take a year or two off before I’m back to where I was. 

For the record, I think the Pacers CAN beat the Heat in a 7 game series. 

I may be off my rocker, but I doubt it.

Thanks for reading,

Levi.