When Michelle Houston, assistant campus director of the Long Island Business Institute in New York, needed a way to get the school’s court reporting program back in the eye of the public, she reached out to NCRA for help. The result: a news article in The Long Island News that quotes Houston about the healthy forecast ahead for court reporting professionals and the need for more students to enter the field. The cost: one phone call. Putting the profession before the public’s eye: priceless. The article helped to generate interest from a number of potential students.
NCRA is committed to supporting its certified court reporting schools and increasing the number of students who choose court reporting as a profession. The Association offers public relations services, like the Long Island Business Institute press release and its distribution, on behalf of local court reporting schools about events and other newsworthy information deemed important to share with the public. Local media outlets often are more than happy to run articles based on press releases they receive, especially when the event or news relates to the surrounding community.
Print outlets are not the only media outlets to use a press release. Take for example the story that showcased the career of court reporting as one that a student could graduate from and immediately become employed. Generated by a press release, the story aired on a Friday night and again on Saturday morning and resulted in 45 phone calls to the Community College of Allegheny County in Pennsylvania, said Mary Beth Johnson, the school’s director of public relations.
“Press releases can be powerful in any medium and successfully get the message out that needs to reach a vast and often untouched audience,” Houston said.
Other examples of press releases issued to local media outlets by NCRA on behalf of certified schools include San Antonio College’s expansion of its court reporting program to include a new captioning program as a result of earning a grant through the Higher Education Act, and announcements whenever a court reporter is newly certified or recertified by NCRA.
Schools interested in taking advantage of this service provided by NCRA’s communications team should email information about their event or newsworthy items to firstname.lastname@example.org. A member of the communications team will review all submissions and contact the schools directly for more information and other instructions.
NCRA also issues press releases to its members who earn new certifications. The releases are distributed in a member’s local media market and very often end up appearing in the local news, sometimes leading to full-length feature articles that showcase the career and highlight its many strong attractions.
Feedback from school representatives and from members about the effort has been extremely positive and growing participation continues to increase the number of media hits or placements that showcase NCRA and its members each month, generating lots of free advertising.