Amy O. Barnes

Integrating Service in Public Relations

Incorporating service learning into her courses, advancing her profession, and lending her expertise to strengthen causes, Amy O. Barnes, APR, assistant professor, puts service into practice.

Pofessor Barnes “allows students to apply their knowledge of public relations in a real-world context and is highly effective in engaging students in the learning process,” said Dr. Olaf Hoerschelmann, director of the School of Mass Communication. “Amy’s students routinely engage in hands-on service projects, for example with the Arkansas Foodbank, Our House, and the Arkansas Children’s Hospital. In the process, her students have made great contributions to area organizations.”

Ray White, communications and marketing director for the Arkansas Foodbank, said Professor Barnes organized her classes into a student-run ad agency. “Their implementation of a social media project during Feeding America’s Hunger Action Month in September more than doubled our Facebook audience. They also got us using Pinterest, Instagram, and Twitter to help build audiences.”

Accredited by the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA), Professor Barnes has held multiple leadership roles in the organization such as serving on the Arkansas Chapter board for eight years, which includes a year as president, four years as assembly delegate, chair and secretary of the Southwest District Board, Research Task Force member and then chair, and Nominating Committee member. In the UA Little Rock School of Mass Communication, Professor Barnes is a PRSA student chapter adviser.

Professor Barnes began teaching in 2006 after serving as executive director of the UA Little Rock Office of Communications since 1999, following three years as public affairs associate/editorial services manager. Her other field experience includes working at the Arkansas Children’s Hospital, Arkansas Educational Television Network, Arkansas Department of Health, KARK, and KATV.

“Professor Barnes’ service goes far beyond the traditional service to the profession that most faculty engage in,” said Dr. Hoerschelmann. Her personal service includes applying public relations strategies as a member of the KUAR Board of Directors, for the American Heart Association and the Quapaw Quarter Association fundraising events, and as a UA Little Rock Campus Campaign Steering Committee member.

Barnes holds an M.A. in journalism from UA Little Rock and a B.A. in journalism from Arkansas Tech University.

Posted in: 2013, Public Service

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