Creating a Purposeful Portfolio

HannahMy name is Hannah Knoblauch. I am currently a third year Strategic Communications student at Elon with a minor in Professional Writing Studies (PWS). My career goal is to go into marketing or public relations (PR) for a company.  To show that I have what it takes to have a successful career in either of these fields, I have come to realize I need to have a portfolio that showcases my best academic and internship work.

Because of the classes I have taken toward a degree in the communications field as well as the internship experience I partook in over the summer, I have a lot of work that I wish to display in my finished portfolio.  Since entering the communication program here at Elon, I have become very versatile in my writing abilities. I hope to show this versatility through my portfolio, so I want to focus on my best work and target any future employee as my chosen audience.

As far as content is concerned, most of my work is academic. I have decided to include mostly writing pieces, including press releases, feature stories, and research reports.  I have had a lot of experience working with real world clients and intend to include the various PR and marketing projects I have completed for them.  These projects include an informational brochure for the Executive board members of the Burlington North Carolina Boy’s and Girl’s Club and as well as research report about the awareness of the Physical Education and Health major on Elon University’s campus. Projects like these will continue to be added through until the end my senior year.

Because rhetoric can be defined as a kind of persuasive writing and I want to persuade a potential employee to hire me, I feel that I can further develop my portfolio in an efficient way by looking at it from a rhetorical point of view. This means that my portfolio will be meant to effectively and efficiently persuade any potential employers to hire me, or at least interview me. Through this I feel that I can create a portfolio sufficient for any future audience in within the strategic communication field.

The best advice I can give to anyone wanting to create his or her own portfolio is to start saving your work now!  One of my biggest challenges has been trying to locate all of the work I wanted to add to my portfolio. If you start saving your work early and in an efficient way, you will only thank yourself later when it comes time to build your portfolio!

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