My last 13 weeks working with #newystartups

My name is Kieran Pascoe and this week I graduated with a Bachelor of Communication degree, majoring in PR.
For the last 13 weeks of my degree I was lucky to get the opportunity to gain some practical experience working with members of the #newystartups team.

I was a member of the creative team for #newystartups, however there were also teams working on events, social media, digital media and relationships management. Together these five teams formed a fictional PR firm operating for #newystartups under an account director, 2015 PR educator of the year, Melanie James. This experience was real-world in its approach, and it genuinely felt like we were a real PR team operating on a real campaign.

Our campaign relied heavily on 12 weeks of research, analysing the approaches of other startup-related networks and comparing those to #newystartups. Ultimately the comparisons between startup groups like UP Pittsburgh, BlueChilli, Startup Melbourne, Fishburners Sydney, and many others, presented a common theme to me: storytelling is key.

Just this week we got to pitch to #newystartups and received some feedback from James Macdonald. For us as students, working towards this final pitch was stressful and it was hard. However the room did not exhibit these emotions at all on the day. Students were excited for the chance to present to #newystartups and we were excited to get some real world client feedback. It’s an opportunity we cherish as students, because it’s one we don’t often get.

Storytelling was central to the creative team’s campaign and pitch. After working with #newystartups for the past 13 weeks I can gladly tell you that the network is truly realising the potential that storytelling has. #newystartups loves to tell the stories of everyone. It is only through connecting, engaging and inspiring each other with our stories, that we will continue to foster the future of a tech-arriving city.

The fact that I can contribute to this blog today is only further proof that this network loves to tell the stories of everyone.

Something I’ve learned about students in particular over the past 13 weeks, is that not all of them who graduate necessarily want to move away from Newcastle. As my teacher Melanie would say, “never assume anything”.

As students, we see the potential in our city, however the opportunities are sometimes lacking. #newystartups is working towards providing these opportunities for everyone, and I hope that our work on this campaign, contributes to building this future in a meaningful way.