Student of the Year Award


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The Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) Utah Chapter is sponsoring the 17th annual Utah PR Student of the Year Competition. The objective of the program is to provide students statewide with the opportunity to apply public relations fundamentals (learned as part of coursework) to a real client and scenario, which will better prepare them for a career in public relations.


The winner will receive $1,000, bragging rights as the Utah PR Student of the Year for 2023 and an option for a public relations internship with a leading Utah public relations team. A Silver and Bronze award will also be presented along with $500 and $250 to the first and second runners-up at the Golden Spike Awards. Each finalist will receive complimentary admission to the event. (You do not need to be present at the event to accept your award.)


The competition is open to undergraduate students who are studying a communication-related major and are enrolled during spring or fall semester 2023 at any accredited university or college in Utah or at Brigham Young University Idaho (which falls under the jurisdiction of the Utah PRSA Chapter). Each student can only enter once per year and there is no cost to enter.

How to Enter

Develop a public relations campaign for the scenario provided in the accompanying materials. The entries will be judged by the client and a group of local PR professionals. One finalist from each school will be selected (provided a minimum of four entries are received from their institution) to compete in a live intercollegiate competition. At-large finalist(s) (or “wild card(s)”) may be selected from schools with less than four entries, as well as from runners-up entries at schools with four or more entries.

Live Competition

The finalists will be invited to present their campaign to the judges on Monday, October 30, 2023, as well as to demonstrate additional “real-life” PR skills including pitching a journalist, participating in a timed writing exercise and responding to a crisis situation. The judging panel will include leaders in the public relations industry and representatives from the non-profit organization. After the finalists are named, they will receive additional instructions for the live competition.


PRSA will assign a professional mentor to all students who confirm interest (in the competition and mentoring) by Wednesday, Sept. 27. Mentors will provide guidance with the competition, serve as a sounding board and help students become active, self-directed problem solvers. Additionally, you will have the opportunity to glean insights from your mentor on a variety of areas outside of the competition, such as personal development, academic direction, internship and volunteer opportunities, etc. Please note that, while it is helpful, it is not necessary to have a mentor to enter the competition. To be assigned a mentor, please email Jason Carlton, APR, at, by the Sept. 27 deadline.


If you have questions regarding the Student of the Year Competition, please email Jason Carlton at