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Strategic Writing and Media Relations Writing Samples


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Lauren Short's writing samples from the Spring 2010 Strategic Writing and Media Relations Writing Samples course at the University of Oregon's School of Journalism and Communication.

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Strategic Writing and Media Relations Writing Samples

  1. 1. Strategic  Writing  and   Media  Relations     Class  writing  samples   Spring  2010                                                           Lauren  Short  
  2. 2. I  was  given  a  sheet  of  facts  and  asked  to  create  a  five  graf  press  release  in  15   minutes.     Pioneer  Airlines   2343  Airport  Road   Chicago,  IL  60016     FOR  IMMEDIATE  RELEASE   Contact:   Director  of  Communications       Lauren  Short       (312)  887-­‐5410       Pioneer  Airlines  CEO  to  speak  on  company  changes  and  third-­‐quarter  performance       CHICAGO  -­‐-­‐  Pioneer  Airlines  Chief  Executive  Officer  Terry  Mullin  will  speak  at  a   conference  tomorrow  at  10  a.m.  to  review  financial  results  from  the  third  quarter  of   operations  and  to  announce  some  operational  and  personnel  changes.     The  conference  will  be  held  in  the  35th  floor  auditorium  of  the  235  West  Wacker   Pioneer  Building.     Mullin  announced  that  Pioneer’s  domestic  miles  for  January-­‐March  was  up  by  15%   from  last  year.  He  stated  that  performance  has  been  better  than  thought  by  First   Call,  the  nations  largest  financial  analysis  company.       Mullin  plans  to  “create  a  more  stable  environment  for  Pioneer,”  as  the  airline  has  yet   to  file  for  bankruptcy  protection.     Video  conference  hookups  can  be  arranged  by  calling  Media  Services  at  (312)  887-­‐ 5234.  A  PDF  of  the  full  third-­‐quarter  report  will  be  available  9  a.m.  Tuesday  at                        
  3. 3.     For  this  assignment  I  was  given  a  sheet  of  facts  and  asked  to  create  a  press  release   that  was  180  words  or  less.     Consumer  Reports   “Always  saving  the  world.”     7800  Best  Street   Yonkers,  N.Y.  12345   (800)  555-­8888       FOR  IMMEDIATE  RELEASE   Contact:     Lauren  Short       Director  of  Media  Relations       (541)  513-­‐2139     Consumer  Reports  supports  the  National  Academy  of  Sciences   pursuit  to  combat  teenage  smoking     Yonkers—During  a  press  conference  today,  Consumer  Reports  (CR)  announced  its   support  to  stop  teenage  smoking  through  strategies  proposed  by  the  National   Academy  of  Sciences  (NAS).     NAS  urges  that  banning  all  cigarette  advertising,  raising  cigarette  taxes,  and   enforcing  all  laws  against  selling  tobacco  to  minors  will  help  combat  teenage   smoking.     At  the  press  conference,  Child  Psychologist  Dr.  Samuel  Chase  discussed  how  high   self-­‐esteem,  good  academic  achievement,  developed  skills  for  handling  peer   influence,  and  close  parent-­‐child  relationships  help  adolescents  avoid  tobacco  use.    
  4. 4. “These  factors  need  to  be  built  up  from  toddlerhood  on.  They  cannot  be  provided   overnight  when  a  child  reaches  the  high-­‐risk  age  of  12  or  13,”  Chase  said.     CR  Spokesperson,  Harriet  Smith  said  teenage  smoking  is  “a  lethal  public  epidemic”   and  that  research  indicates  over  3,000  teenagers  smoke  daily,  consuming  roughly   17  billion  of  the  500  billion  cigarettes  sold  in  the  U.S.  every  year.       Smith  suggests  that  parents  should  emphasize  health  and  addiction  risks,  decode   cigarette  ads,  and  impose  consequences  for  smoking.     A  complete  transcript  of  this  morning’s  press  conference  and  more  prevention  tips   can  be  found  at         180  words                              
  5. 5.         I  was  asked  to  condense  a  five  page  press  release  into  a  five  graf  story.       BEER  INSTITUTE   122  C  Street  NW,  Suite  350   Washington,  DC  20001     FOR  IMMEDIATE  RELEASE   Contact:   Director  of  Communications       Lauren  Short   (202)  737-­‐2337         Study  shows  that  beer  largely  supports  U.S.  economy       WASHINGTON  –  A  2009  study  commissioned  by  the  Beer  Institute  and  National   Beer  Wholesalers  Association  states  that  America’s  beer  industry  contributes  nearly   $190  billion  annually  to  the  U.S.  economy,  paying  almost  $55  billion  in  wages  and   $36  billion  in  federal,  state,  and  local  taxes.     “This  study  shows  that  more  than  ever,  America’s  brewers  play  a  pivotal  role  in   promoting  strong  and  robust  economic  growth  throughout  our  country,”  said   August  A.  Busch  IV,  president  and  chief  executive  officer  of  Anheuser-­‐Busch   Companies,  Inc.     The  promotion  of  beer  helps  support  other  segments  of  the  economy  by   contributing  more  than  $4  billion  for  the  agricultural  sector,  including  malting   barley,  hops,  brewers  rice  and  corn.     “As  the  single  largest  purchaser  of  rice  in  the  country  and  one  of  the  leading   purchasers  of  other  agricultural  goods,  the  beer  industry’s  contributions  to   America’s  farm  economy  are  helping  support  rural  families  and  small  businesses   coast  to  coast,”  said  Jeff  Becker,  president  of  Beer  Institute.       The  complete  Beer  Serves  America  Economic  Impact  study  and  breakdown  of   economic  contributions  is  available  at        
  6. 6.   I  was  given  a  sheet  of  facts  and  asked  to  create  a  press  invite  in  15  minutes.       San  Jose  Wendy’s     FOR  IMMEDIATE  RELEASE   April  28,  2010     Contact:   Lauren  Short       (541)  513-­‐2139     Wendy’s  president  will  visit  San  Jose  franchise     to  distribute  food  certificates     What:     Wendy’s  President  Tom  Mueller  will  visit  San  Jose,  CA  on  Thursday   with  Mayor  Ron  Gonzales,  to  thank  investigators  from  the  police  department,  the   staff  of  the  local  Wendy’s  for  working  together  to  solve  the  case  of  the  severed  finger   hoax  in  a  bowl  of  the  franchise’s  chili.  Wendy’s  customers  will  also  be  thanked  by   having  a  chance  to  receive  one  of  3,000  free  $5  food  certificates.     When:  Thursday,  April  29,  2010     • 6  a.m.   Mueller  opens  Wendy’s  for  business  and  works  order  line  for   one-­‐hour  photo  op.   • 7:15  a.m.  Meeting  with  mayor  and  police  representatives.   Announcement  of  special  college  scholarship  photo  op.   • 8  a.m.  Certificate  giveaway  (30  minutes)  photo  op.   • 9  a.m.  Private  meeting  for  store  staff  and  group  photo  op.   • 9:30  a.m.  Press  conference  highlighting  Ayala  case  and  Wendy’s   Annual  Stockholder  Meeting  held  on  April  28  photo  op.   • 10:15  a.m.-­‐  1p.m  20-­‐minute  scheduled  individual  interviews  with   Mueller  for  reporters  and  producers  photo  op.     Who:       Tom  Mueller,  President,  Wendy’s       Ron  Gonzales,  Mayor,  San  Jose,  CA         Where:       San  Jose  Wendy’s     Additional  information:  To  schedule  an  interview,  please  call  800-­‐454-­‐1900  or   email  Time  slots  are  available  on  a  first  come,  first  served   basis.  Reporters,  editors,  and  producers  are  encouraged  to  get  PDF  materials  from   Friday’s  meeting  and  press  conference  at      
  7. 7. I  was  asked  to  create  a  press  release  covering  an  important  event.         Committee  to  Protect  Journalists   333  Seventh  Ave.,  New  York,  NY  10001     FOR  IMMEDIATE  RELEASE     Contact:     Director  of  Communications   Lauren  Short   (212)  465-­‐1004     Om  Sharma  of  Nepal  to  be  featured  guest  speaker  at  Press  Freedom  Facts  2009     MANHATTAN  –  On  Tuesday,  May  4  at  noon,  Om  Sharma  of  Nepal  will  be  the   featured  guest  speaker  at  “Press  Freedom  Facts  2009,”  an  annual  event  intended  to   report  on  the  deaths,  physical  attacks,  illegal  detentions  and  threats  suffered  by   journalists,  in  the  grand  ballroom  of  the  Mandarin  Oriental  Hotel  on  Columbus   Circle  in  midtown  Manhattan.       Sharma  was  recently  released  from  prison  after  being  illegally  jailed  and  tortured   for  three  years  after  Nepalese  government  officials  charged  him  with  treason  and   terrorism  for  publishing  “seditious  materials.”     Gwen  Ifil  of  the  Public  Broadcasting  System  and  CPJ  board  member,  and  CPJ   Executive  Director  Ann  Cooper  will  co-­‐host  the  event  as  well.     Sharma  will  review  three  cases  of  imprisonment  and  torture  from  the  76  reported   worldwide  in  2009.    An  annual  publication,  Attacks  on  the  Press  in  2009,  will  be   discussed  and  the  Wall  of  Honor  listing  for  the  71  journalists  killed  on  assignment   this  year  will  be  released.     A  recipient  of  the  Burton  Benjamin  Memorial  Award,  for  distinguished  achievement   in  preserving  press  freedom  around  with  world  will  be  named  at  the  event.     Reservations  will  no  longer  be  accepted  after  6  p.m.  EST  on  Monday,  May  3.  Please   visit  for  more  information.              
  8. 8.     Facts  were  disclosed  to  me  sporadically  over  45  minutes.  This  was  updated  as  more   information  was  released.     Highway  crews  at  the  scene  of  two-­‐car  collision  on  Highway  99     MONROE,  Ore  -­‐-­‐  Oregon  Department  of  Transportation  Emergency  Response   Team  set  up  detours  on  U.S.  Highway  99  after  both  lanes  of  traffic  were  blocked  due   to  a  two-­‐car  collision  that  occurred  one  mile  south  of  Monroe.     It  is  believed  that  the  accident  was  caused  after  the  Toyota  Tundra,  reported   stolen  yesterday  afternoon  from  the  long-­‐term  parking  lot  of  the  Portland   International  Airport,  veered  into  the  northbound  lane  at  speeds  of  100  mph  in   heavy  rain  at  6:45  p.m.  yesterday.   A  preliminary  report  from  Benton  County  Sheriff’s  office  states  that  Howard   Martin,  78,  of  Salem  was  the  only  passenger  in  the  Volkswagen  Golf  and  was   reported  dead  at  the  scene  of  the  accident.  The  driver,  no  identification  at  this  time,   sustained  minor  injuries.   Benton  County  spokesperson  Lieutenant  Helen  Daniels  said  that  Billy  Lynn,   19,  of  Harrisburg  was  driving  the  pickup  truck  with  a  suspended  license  when  he   struck  the  compact  car.     Deputy  Tony  Daniels,  47,  of  Corvallis  sustained  minor  injuries  after  a   southbound  vehicle  was  coming  to  a  stop  and  struck  him  while  outside  of  his  vehicle   at  the  scene.     Lynn,  uninjured  in  the  accident,  has  been  arrested  on  the  charge  of  vehicular   homicide.    
  9. 9. A  note  from  my  professor:     October  10,  2010       To  whom  it  may  concern  at  Jess3:     This  is  a  letter  of  reference  for  Lauren  Short,  who  is  interviewing  soon  with  a   representative  of  your  agency.    I  am  providing  this  letter  electronically  to  Lauren,   and  I  would  be  happy  to  send  you  a  printed  copy  later.     I  am  delighted  to  recommend  her.    Lauren  is  an  energetic  and  creative  student  who   nicely  balances  clear  communication  and  complex  technology  –  a  great  combination,   as  we  speed  into  a  new  world  of  outreach  and  connections.    She  already  exhibits   strong  organizational  and  leadership  skills,  which  she  put  to  good  use  this  past   summer  in  an  internship  with  NextStep  Recycling.    I  understand  she  is  continuing   work  with  this  group  now,  helping  it  expand  its  social  networking  connections.     You’ll  find  in  Lauren  strategic  thinking  and  thorough  followthrough.    You’ll  be   pleased,  I  am  sure,  with  her  writing  and  speaking  skills  –  she  is  clear,  concise  and   correct  (which  won’t  stop  her  from  heading  down  more  creative  and  even  edgy   paths  when  it’s  needed).     I’d  be  happy  to  provide  more  information  if  needed;  I  wanted  to  be  sure  now  that   you  heard  from  an  “old  professor”  that  you  have  a  real  talent  in  Lauren.                     Sincerely,                 Duncan  McDonald             Professor  of  Journalism             University  of  Oregon