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The University of Alabama

UA’s Plank Center Seeks Applicants for Fellowship for Educators Program

TUSCALOOSA, Ala.– The Plank Center for Leadership in Public Relations at The University of Alabama is accepting applications for the 7th Annual Fellowship for Educators program.

The fellowships are open to college-level public-relations educators from the United States and abroad. The program seeks to enhance academia with real world experience, creating an exchange of information and ideas to enhance the professional development of both educators and their host organizations.

“The fellows will work in world-class agencies and corporate settings, seeing first-hand the issues and challenges practitioners face today,” said Dr. Karla Gower, director of the Plank Center and professor in the department of advertising and public relations in UA’s College of Communication and Information Sciences. “Many educators sum up their experience as life-changing.”

Public relations students are key beneficiaries of the program. Students can be assured their professors are knowledgeable in the current practices and issues facing practitioners and that practitioners have a greater appreciation for the value of theory and research of their classrooms.

Educators selected to participate in the Plank Center Fellowship program spend at least two full weeks in the offices of the host organization. Deadline for candidate applications is Sunday, Jan. 31. The Plank Center has posted application details for educators online at

About the Plank Center for Leadership in Public Relations

In 2005, The University of Alabama Board of Trustees established The Plank Center — named for the late public relations leader and UA alumna Betsy Plank — to develop and recognize outstanding performance in the profession and classroom. Through a variety of programs, and in concert with groups and associations, the center works to nurture and help develop outstanding leaders.

In addition to national leaders in the practice and education, the center’s board includes an ex officio position for the president of the Public Relations Student Society of America, which represents more than 11,000 members in 300-plus colleges and universities.

The center is housed in UA’s College of Communication and Information Sciences. UA’s public relations program, with nearly 600 students, is the largest undergraduate degree program within the College. The program is certified by the Public Relations Society of America and for six years has been ranked among the top five public relations programs in the country by PRWeek magazine.

More information about the Plank Center for Leadership in Public Relations can be found at

The University of Alabama, a student-centered research university, is experiencing significant growth in both enrollment and academic quality. This growth, which is positively impacting the campus and the state's economy, is in keeping with UA's vision to be the university of choice for the best and brightest students. UA, the state's flagship university, is an academic community united in its commitment to enhancing the quality of life for all Alabamians.

  • CONTACT: Hailey Grace Steele, College of Communication an Information Sciences,, 205/348-6416; Jessika White, Plank Center for Leadership and Public Relations,, 205/348-7250
  • SOURCE: Jessika White, communications specialist, advertising and public relations, 205/348-7250,