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Emerson Student Takes Top Prize in International PR Competition

Trevor McLean gives thumbs up on Zoom screen
Trevor McLean ’22

Communication Studies major Trevor McLean ’22 was on the winning team of this year’s GlobCom, an annual international public relations competition held June 2-5 that asks students to work together with peers around the world to solve a PR problem.

This year’s client was The Daily Mile, an initiative that aims to promote physical, mental, social, and emotional wellbeing in children through jogging. McLean’s team’s “Run to the Rainbow” campaign was selected by a panel of judges as the most effective and creative.

“I was extremely grateful to be able to experience participating in this year’s GlobCom competition. Not only did it allow me to experience real-world public relations work, but I also got to interact with other students [who] were studying all over the world,” McLean said.

Emerson College has represented the United States at GlobCom since the competition’s inception in 2003. The College is one of 14 institutions in 15 countries on five continents to participate. Each year (2020 excepted) a different university hosts the competition. This year, due to the ongoing pandemic, a hybrid conference was hosted by Blanquerna University – Ramon Llull in Barcelona, Spain, with many students, including those at Emerson, participating remotely.

Greg Payne and Page Lopez smile for the camera
Communication Studies Chair Greg Payne, co-director of the Emerson-Blanquerna Center for Global Communication, with Page Lopez ’18, a 2020 Blanquerna graduate, at GlobCom 2021 in Barcelona. 

“Having to complete an incredibly hands-on project with your peers being located halfway around the world was already a tough task,” McLean said. “On top of that, COVID made things even more challenging for my team and [me]. In the end, we were able to fight through the adversity and end up winning the competition!

“After reflecting back on this year’s GlobCom project, I again realize that I am very appreciative for the experience. I learned a lot about PR and my interest [in] the field has really grown.”

McLean is a student in Global PR, taught by senior affiliated faculty member David Gerzof Richard.

“GlobCom is a fantastic opportunity for students studying public relations at Emerson College. The class and the competition present students with real-world international PR challenges that must be navigated in order to succeed. Students need to work through nuances in time zones, language, culture, religion, access to technology, among other challenges to work together towards the singular goal of winning the GlobCom competition,” Richard said.

“Trevor did an outstanding job working with his team to get over the finish line and win the competition.”

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