Isabella Abbott | Features Editor
Jan. 5, 2023
As Duquesne’s December graduates embark on their post-graduation journeys, one student in particular shares how her extracurriculars and internships helped her gain experience and knowledge in her field of study.
Braylyn Bruno, who majored in both strategic public relations/advertising, and English, knows how to keep herself busy with academics, internships and extracurriculars. By being involved in many on-campus organizations during her time at school, Bruno learned more about herself and her passions for her future career.
One of the organizations that helped her the most was Duquesne’s chapter of the Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA), where she ascended to the role of president in the fall semester, completing a journey that began when she joined the club in her freshman year of 2020.
“I was definitely the most involved with PRSSA,” Bruno said. “I got to know a lot of professionals who have offered to help me post-graduation, which is great, so that one is definitely the most beneficial for me just because it’s directly related to my major and I’ve met so many people from that.”
Not only was she able to learn different networking skills by being a part of PRSSA, but during her time as president, she was able to implement crowdfunding. This allowed more students to attend different PRSSA events, something she had trouble doing as a freshman.
“As president, I used some of our funds so that we could provide transportation for any students in our organization that wanted to go,” Bruno said. “Before that, it would be more of a go-on-your-own type of thing. To my knowledge, I’m the first president that actually brought us, as a group, to these events.”
In addition to providing transportation to members of her organization, Bruno also completed three internships during her time as a student. During one of these internships, she was able to build the Instagram account for a client from the ground up.
“One of the clients I was working for was a beauty company that had unleashed a new product and I brought their Instagram up from 20 followers to 500 in the span of my internship, which was a huge jump for them because they were a new company,” Bruno said. “Even the posts, I completely brought up engagement with likes and comments, and just overall interaction with the account.”
Bruno was able to learn many new skills within her internships as well, some of which she still applies today.
“I would do marketing reports and other reports for the client, which were a great experience because I got to do summaries, but also statistics,” Bruno said. “I also just experienced so many different types of industries, which really let me know what I enjoyed working with.”
Another one of her internships had her working on her own, which allowed for more freedom in a professional atmosphere, something she found very important with her busy schedule.
“My very first internship was with Duquesne’s English department, where I was a marketing and communications intern,” Bruno said.
“With their social media campaigns, I had a lot of freedom as well so I did ‘Trivia Tuesdays’ and ‘Books of the Week.’”
Someone who can speak on Bruno’s ability to work hard while maintaining a schedule filled with internships and 18 credits of college courses is Morgan Emery, PRSSA’s vice president.
“Braylyn is one of the hardest working people I know,” Emery said. “Working alongside her as the vice president of PRSSA, she really wanted to increase awareness and retention about our small club, and this past semester we were able to nearly double our roster, which would not have been possible without her guidance and leadership.”
Some of Bruno’s other clubs and activities include Duquesne’s Advertisement Club, Circle K, Habitat for Humanity, Pi Sigma Epsilon and Sigma Tau Delta.
She said that any student looking to join extracurriculars at school should join the ones they’re interested in.
“I would say, for extracurricular activities on campus, to join at least one organization associated with your major or an area of study that you’re interested in,” Bruno said. “Then, do one fun organization that connects with you in some different way.
“So I’d definitely say do one fun one and at least one professional one. That way, you’ll meet people in your major, but you’ll also have a different kind of outlet that isn’t school-related.”
For those looking to get internships, Bruno said if a student has already had one and is looking to get another, they should try and find one in a different area of study.
“Sometimes people think they love their first one, but then they try something different, and they love it so much more,” Bruno said. “Internships are the time you have to kind of play around and figure out what you like and try to work in different industries, because you might find something you weren’t expecting to love.”