5 Careers for Graduates with a Master’s in Public Relations

Emerson students studying in the Walker building

Thinking of going to grad school for Public Relations (PR), or currently in a program and wondering what to do after school? PR is a broad, versatile, and very marketable degree. However, a struggle with the broadness of the field is that it can be difficult to decide which jobs to look for after graduation. In today’s post, we’re going to discuss a few careers that are a great fit for PR graduates. 

What is PR?

It’s easy to only think of PR professionals as press secretaries and representatives. While press releases are certainly an important part of PR, the field encompasses many other functions. Broadly, PR is a field that works to influence how the public views an organization or person. 

This could mean trying to predict how current events will impact the public opinion of a corporation. It could mean training social media interns how to maintain a positive relationship with the public. It could even mean directing the artistic vision of a brand so it is appealing to its target audience. 

PR can take many forms, but the goal of a PR professional is always to understand, influence, and respond to public opinion. These skills make PR professionals ideal candidates for the jobs we’re discussing today. The positions in today’s blog require a professional who can use data to help make a more successful brand, product, or message.

Do I Really Need a Master’s?

Jobs in the PR field are often competitive, so having a master’s degree in PR can give you an edge. With Emerson’s PR graduate program, students gain practical experience in the field and critical skills for future PR work. Graduating from Emerson with a master’s degree in PR equips you with the skills to excel in your future career.

Career 1: Art Director

An Art Director is one of the most creative careers available to a PR graduate. Their job is to build and unite a team of creators to make effective marketing campaigns and product designs. An art director will oversee writers and designers to ensure that the product being designed will engage the target audience. With an average salary of $130,000, becoming an Art Director is both creatively and financially rewarding.

Conference meeting of PR professionals
Photo by Redd F on Unsplash

Career 2: Social Media Coordinator

PR graduates are perfect candidates for Social Media Coordinator positions. Averaging a salary of $42,000 per year, a Social Media Coordinator is in charge of tracking media trends and using data to improve audience engagement. This career is a great opportunity to combine artistry with research, creating media that increases engagement and influences public opinion. With high job satisfaction rates and a strong average starting salary, becoming a Social Media Coordinator is a great option for Public Relations graduates.

Career 3: Brand Manager

Brand Managers are in charge of crafting or maintaining a company’s branding so that the company stays relevant and appealing to its target audience. Some responsibilities of a brand manager include researching the company’s market, leading promotional campaigns, and overseeing public communications. 

Brand Managers have an average salary of $69,000 per year, and Boston is one of the top paying cities for this job, with salaries falling between $130,000 and $200,000. Companies know that brand managers are vital for making a product or organization successful, which also increases the demand for high quality Brand Managers.

Career 4: Community Manager

A Community Manager engages with the public and helps their company develop a strong online community. A key responsibility of a Community Manager is to understand the data analytics from a company’s online platforms and use this information to grow their audience. In addition to maintaining a company’s online audience, a Community Manager plans in-person events to increase community engagement. As a competitive career with an average salary of $48,000, applicants with a master’s of PR may have an edge in the application process, based on their higher level of education. 

Career 5: Copywriter

Copywriting is an important role in many different industries. Strong copywriting is at the core of educational campaigns, sales initiatives, and persuasive advertisements. As a Copywriter, you can work with any number of companies, from international corporations to local businesses. With an average salary of $53,000, and a wide array of work environments, copywriting is a great career choice for Public Relations graduates.

Overall, PR is a field with many career opportunities, including these five careers and more. If any of these career paths sound like something you would enjoy, consider applying to Emerson’s PR graduate program, where you’ll gain all the necessary skills to be a successful, competitive PR professional.

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Olivia is a graduate student in Emerson's Communication Disorders program. Originally from Ohio, she is loving Emerson and city life. When she's not writing for the Grad Life blog or studying, she loves to read, bake, and crochet.

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