College Grad Public Relations in New York City
Name: Valerie
Career: Account Executive
Company Field: Public Relations
Located In: New York City, New York
Grew Up In: Honolulu, Hawaii
Graduated From:
Majored In: Management & Business
Graduated In: 2012
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After College Lifestyles

Valerie is a PR account executive in New York City. She specifically works in promoting the Lifestyle and Travel divisions of her company. Some consider PR to be a very challenging profession. Take a tour of Valerie's NYC apartment and learn what working in public relations really entails.

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Name: Valerie
Career: Account Executive
Company Field: Public Relations
Located In: New York City, New York
Grew Up In: Honolulu, Hawaii
Graduated From:
Majored In: Management & Business
Graduated In: 2012

Quick Stats on Being a PR Account Executive

Work Hours/Week: 55 hours
Work Hour Flexibility: Low
Quality of Lifestyle Outside of Work: Medium
Work Stress Level: High
Level of Routine Work: High
Interaction with Co-Workers: Medium
Pay Level (out of 5): $$$

Life of a College Grad Public Relations Account Executive


I work as an Account Executive at a small Public Relations firm that specializes in luxury brands. The firm contains three divisions: Lifestyle, Travel and Spirits. I work on five accounts in the Lifestyle and Travel divisions.

PR Account Executive's Daily Routine:

6:30 AM Wake up, go to the gym

7:30 AM Shower & eat breakfast/get ready

8:00 AM Leave for work

8:30 AM Check emails, read the newspaper

9:30 AM Meetings, work

1:00 PM Eat lunch (at my desk while I work)

7:00 PM Meet friends for dinner or go to yoga

10:30 PM Go to sleep

Working as a Public Relations Executive
How To Get Into The Field
I actually didn't study PR at all in college but I interned at this company between my junior and senior year, which was an instrumental step in getting the job after graduation. I'd say that the best way to get into the field is through internships since you don't need prior experience to get an internship and you get to learn a lot and network.

What Do You Really Do?
On a daily basis, I am in contact with online and print editors. We re-actively and proactively pitch our clients so that they are featured in editorial content. I spend a lot of time answering emails and sending people images and information. We also plan and execute media and consumer events, such as store openings, parties, tastings etc.

In addition to PR, I also run my own online food blog eyechow. Eyechow is a diverse, globally-inspired food blog that features restaurant and hotel reviews, food product reviews, culinary event coverage and recipes. Posts are featured by city on a rotating basis. You can check it out here:
Pros/Cons of Your Job
The pros are that you get to attend many fun events and get to interact with professionals in many different industries: media and PR and marketing, obviously, but also the industries your clients are in. So for me, I meet people in the travel/hospitality industry but also people involved in interior design, tobacco, technology, photography, etc. To succeed in PR you have to be a people person! Cons are that it is often thankless and it's a ton of work. There is no real opportunity to disconnect and you can get called in to work at any time. It also has notoriously high turnover (people get burned out) and low salaries, even as you move up.

Tour My New York City Apartment

Quick Stats on New York City

Job Opportunities: High
Competition for Housing: High
Housing Cost: High
Population of Young People: High
Nightlife: High
Safety: Medium
Biggest Industries: Finance, Fashion, Marketing/PR, Hospitality, Art

The Life of a College Grad in New York City


College Grad New York City Apartment

What's it Like to Live Here?
The weather in NYC is horrible. When it's hot it's scorching and muggy and when it's cold, the wind is piercing and brutal. There never seems to be a sunny, pleasant day, only heat waves or blizzards. In the summer the streets smell like trash and in the winter it gets dark in the early afternoon. That's my least favorite part about living here.

People are definitely "New Yorkers;" they care about clothes, fashion and trends. I wouldn't describe anyone here as laid-back. Being from Hawaii, I don't enjoy people's unfriendliness and pretentiousness.

How Did I End Up Here?
I would like to move someplace less crowded and dirty, to a place more in touch with nature. Everyone in New York seems to think that New York is the center of the universe, but I'm pretty sure only they think that. I ended up here because I went to school nearby, upstate in Saratoga Springs. When I got the job offer following my internship, I decided to try it out even though I knew I wouldn't like living in the city.
My Set-Up
I live in a nice one-bedroom apartment with my boyfriend in Astoria, Queens. When people think of Queens they think it's really far from the city but my job is just one stop into the city on the N, Q or R trains. It only takes me about 15 minutes to get to work, it's really easy. I might not love NYC, but I love Astoria. It's an up-and-coming neighborhood with lots of great people, food and parks. It's one of the most diverse neighborhoods in the world, which I love.

Closing Advice


I wish I had explored more job opportunities in fields and industries that I have a personal interest in. I would advise graduates to explore potential ways to turn a hobby into a career so they can do what they love- then it won't feel like work! Also, don't worry about finding the perfect job right out of college. As long as you're doing something productive in terms of a career or personal development, you're on the right track. There are plenty of years ahead!

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