By: Lucas Furrer & Michelle Laquindanum
On March 5, the Diverse Nevada campaign hosted a first of its kind “Recruiting Diverse Voices” summit at Reno City Hall. Speaking at the event was Reno City Councilman Oscar Delgado, UNR recruiters Carolina Martinez and Devin Williams, and Diverse Nevada Account Executive Lizbeth Alvarez. Each presentation addressed the importance of promoting racial inclusivity in the workplace through active recruiting and promotion.
Diverse Nevada is an organization composed of five University of Nevada, Reno students participating in the Public Relations Student Society of America’s Bateman competition. Their campaign is meant to promote racial diversity in the fields of public relations and strategic communications. Their campaign will be judged against dozens of other college teams in the country.
Inspired by the uplifting stories collected in PRSA Foundation’s “Diverse Voices; Profiles in Leadership,” book, the “Recruiting Diverse Voices” summit educated attendees on the unique obstacles faced by young diverse students. It also stressed the importance of working even harder to create messaging and opportunities that are accessible to those of all backgrounds.
Oscar Delgado collaborated with UNR’s PRSSA branch and Diverse Nevada to award both high school and university students sponsorships for PRSSA memberships and copies of “Diverse Voices; Profiles in Leadership.” These sponsorships removed a single barrier of entry into the public relations field for these students.
"We are better when we listen to our community," shared Councilman Delgado.
More than 70 attendees, primarily professionals within the Truckee Meadows area, made up the audience. Other attendees included UNR students and professors, intent to learn more on the subject of inclusion.
Both the idea behind the summit and its content were informed by more than three months of research on the part of the Diverse Nevada team. This research included in-depth interviews with Reno public relations professionals, UNR student surveys and extensive inspection into the racial makeup of the community.
In educating professionals about how to communicate with and recruit these students, the racial gap in the public relations field is further undone. Tasked with communicating with communities of all backgrounds in Reno, strategic communications industries in the area took an important first step in becoming more racially inclusive through the “Recruiting Diverse Voices Summit.”