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As professional communicators we’re keenly aware of the power of words and ideas to change attitudes and behaviors. What about the power of letters?

In our profession, three letters carry tremendous influence –


Those letters after your name don’t signify that you’re a better communicator than someone who doesn’t have them. What they do say is that you’ve made a commitment to your career that sets you apart from the pack, putting yourself through a rigorous, peer-reviewed assessment accompanied by a personal commitment to ethics, professionalism and life-long learning.

It’s a lot of work, and it’s not inexpensive, but practitioners with five or more years of full-time experience are often better prepared to meet this challenge than they know.

Those interested in pursuing accreditation do so for a variety of reasons. Some are looking at an impartial skills assessment, identifying their strengths and weaknesses to make themselves better prepared to meet the fast-moving challenges demanded by today’s marketplace.

Some see accreditation as a means of joining the ranks of the nation’s senior practitioners, recognizing it as a common trait among prominent professionals throughout Maryland and beyond.

Others are interested in setting themselves apart for career advancement. Some of the better jobs in our business are advertised with “APR preferred” in the requirements. Even without this as a filter, having an APR often helps a candidate differentiate him or herself from the competition. And for good reason – accredited professionals typically (though not always) earn more than their non-accredited peers.

Whatever your motivation, the hardest part is knowing where to start in the process.

Fortunately, PRSA’s Maryland Chapter can help.

On Tuesday, October 6, as part of the 32nd annual Chesapeake Conference, the Chapter will feature a panel of accredited professionals sharing their insights into the accreditation process. It will be a two-way discussion – bring your questions and your enthusiasm and leave with a path for starting the next phase of your career.

–Industry News