AUT grad wins big PR scholarship

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AUT Bachelor of Communication and Bachelor of Business Studies graduate Tessa Williams has been named as the 2015 recipient of the Porter Novelli Joseph Peart Scholarship. Williams has also worked at FCB Auckland.

Now in its third year, the scholarship recognises the outstanding contribution Joseph Peart made to the field of public relations in New Zealand over many decades.

“We’re thrilled to award this year’s Joseph Peart Scholarship to Tessa,” said Porter Novelli managing director Strahan Wallis.

“She was up against a strong group of candidates. Tessa impressed us with her knowledge, enthusiasm and her passion. She upholds the Porter Novelli values and we’re looking forward to kick-starting her career in PR.”

The scholarship’s previous two recipients, Kaya Arai and Lauren Mitchell, remain part of the Porter Novelli team as an account manager and account executive respectively.

“Kaya and Lauren have worked on some of New Zealand’s leading PR campaigns, and all three scholars are helping us in our goal to have an unfair share of the best talent.”

The scholarship is a fully paid six week internship at Porter Novelli and a $1500 contribution to further Williams’ training and development over the next 12 months. It starts immediately.

About the Porter Novelli Joseph Peart scholarship
To apply for the 2015 Joseph Peart Scholarship, students from a number of tertiary providers were asked to answer a range of written questions, submit a blog entry and go through a series of interviews and testing to be awarded the scholarship.

About Porter Novelli
Porter Novelli is the only top tier global public relations consultancy with New Zealand offices. It is a full service PR agency and represents many of New Zealand’s leading brands and companies. The company has won many global and local awards, including various PRINZ awards, PRWeek Best Place to Work (2014) and two CAANZ Gold Axis awards (both in 2014).

About Tessa Williams
Tessa Williams is the third recipient of the Joseph Peart Porter Novelli Scholarship and a recent graduate of AUT. She has just completed a Bachelor of Business and Bachelor of Communications Studies Conjoint Degree. During her four years at university, she organised AUT’s Annual PR Alumni and Employers evening for more than 150 guests, which gave her a taste for event planning. She also gained hands on experience working with integrated agency FCB New Zealand, and the Great Potentials Foundation, providing invaluable insight into the world of PR.

In Williams’ final semester, she completed a nine-week cooperative education placement at The Warehouse Group. She worked full time for the company’s Internal Communications and Employment Brand teams. During this time, she learnt about the importance of communicating well within large companies, authentic storytelling and the power of social media.

She enjoyed working for a large New Zealand company, but wanted to learn more about agency life. She is joining Porter Novelli eager to gain new skills and knowledge of the industry. She loves that a career in PR offers variety, and is excited to learn more about corporate PR, social media and crisis management.

Williams is a food enthusiast – you will find her at the local markets on a Sunday morning, and trying out Auckland’s latest food and drink spots in the weekend. She loves spending time with family, relaxing at her beach house in Whangamata and nature walks.

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