UNA Communications Program Takes Home PRCA Student and Educator of the Year Awards #myUNA

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UNA Communications Program Takes Home PRCA Student and Educator of the Year Awards

Apr. 16, 2010

FLORENCE, Ala. – Students and faculty of the University of North Alabama Department of Communications took home 18 PRCA (Public Relations Council of Alabama) awards this week, including Student of the Year and Educator of the Year. The Student of the Year award went to senior Emily Matthews, of Baileyton, while Educator of the Year went to Lisa Darnell, assistant professor of speech communication. The awards were presented at PRSA’s 2010 conference in Auburn.

Student of the Year honors from PRCA are based on academic achievement, involvement in PRCA and examples of successful work in the field. Educator of the Year honors are based on a demonstrated commitment to advance the profession of public relations through teaching in the field or a closely related discipline. Darnell has been selected as the PRCA North Alabama Chapter’s Educator of the Year the past two years.

Darnell initiated PRCA’s UNA Chapter in 1993, shortly after joining the university’s communication faculty. The chapter has a long record of competition success, which Darnell said “speaks volumes about the quality of our program.”

“Our success in the competitions and our students’ behavior at the conference adds to UNA’s respect across the state,” she said.

Twenty-three UNA students attended this year’s conference with Darnell and communications instructor Beth Garfrerick. Additional PRCA awards earned by the group include:


Leah Beth Downs, of Athens; Brandi Norman, of Decatur; and Kathryn Robinson, of Russellville – UCLA: Staying Competitive in the New Era of High Education Institutions

Allison Looney, of Florence – Northwest Alabama Reading Aides Display Plan

Ethan Voce, of Cullman; and Will Hodges, of Trinity – ATO Parent Video Newsletter


Chelsea Mitchell, of Hampton Cove – Merichem Wood Preservation Trade Show

Lerrin Sutton, of Athens – The Hangover Bag

Sarah Robbins, of Florence – How UNA Students View the Communication Department Survey

Hodges – SERVICE Logo

Hodges – Alpha Tau Omega Calendar

Hodges – Alpha Tau Omega Poster

Hodges – Alpha Tau Omega Promotional Brochure

Michelle Worley, of Mill Valley, Calif.; Norman; Haley Howle, of Birmingham; Candace Pike, of Florence; and Laine Roberson, of Rogersville – A Campaign Proposal for the UNA Communications Department

Ashley Halbrooks, of Hartselle; Allison Looney, of Florence; Robinson; and Robbins – Go NARA!


Sutton – Earle Trent Assembly Brochure

Halbrooks – NARA Newsletter

Amanda Terry, of Muscle Shoals – Newsletter for Earle Trent Assembly

Jessica Clayton, of Tupelo, Miss. – Earle Trent Assembly Brochure

Clayton – Earle Trent Assembly Display Plan

Hodges – ATO Parent Logo

For more information on the UNA Department of Communications, visit www.una.edu/communications.