jiang_huaHua Jiang is an assistant professor of public relations in the Newhouse School. She teaches graduate-level Public Relations Theory and says she also loves teaching PR Research, Campaigns, Principles, and Management. Research methods is one of Jiang’s areas of expertise, and she loves to work with her students on their PR Research and Campaigns projects. Jiang serves as the 2013 vice chair of the Public Relations Society of America’s Committee on Work, Life and Gender Issues; the 2013-2014 fundraising co-chair of the Public Relations Division; and the 2012-2013 and 2013-2014 secretary and newsletter editor of the Mass Communication & Society Division of the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication.

Q: Do you have any particular interests within public relations? 

A:  I really enjoy media relations and social media as it pertains to nonprofit PR. I was a media relations specialist for a year when I was in China, working for an international nonprofit organization that is committed to helping people severely impacted by natural disasters and epidemic diseases. That was the beginning of my professional career and part of the reason why I wanted to come here and study more about public relations.

Q: What motivates you?

A: I am motivated when I do something I am interested in.  Playing multiple roles in life motivates me, as well, because being a professor, doing my professional work and being a mother is all very fulfilling. I think multitasking is challenging but makes me feel good about myself. There are so many great things going on in my life. Motivation comes from how you perceive your life and what kind of life you want to lead. There are a lot of things in life I need to do, and I try my best to be energetic, positive and motivated. Ultimately what motivates me is that I want to have a happy life. I want to do my job well, be a good mother and wife, and I want to help people.

Q: Did you always want to work in public relations and/or communications?

A: When I was very young, I wanted to be a salesperson. I was interested in marketing and sales and wanted to enter the business world. After I went to college I was very interested in journalism and mass communication, and at that time I didn’t even know public relations was a profession. After I came to the United States I became very interested in the field of public relations.

Q: What has been your proudest moment in your communications career?

A: I was very active when I was back at Towson University, and I advised some Master’s students while they were doing their Theses. Most of them did a wonderful job with their projects and got their degrees. That was a very proud moment in my life. I also participate in fundraising campaigns for many organizations, and it’s always a great sense of accomplishment whenever we reach a goal, because that means we get to help people in great need.

Q: Do you have any fun facts about yourself?

A: I run, and my goal in the next five years is to run a half marathon. I also want to spend a month in Europe, play guitar with strangers in the streets and work in a café. I am currently learning how to play the guitar, and I would like to learn how to play the piano with my daughter. I also want to get more involved with dance and learn how to swim.

Q: What is/are your favorite quote(s)?

A: “Be yourself.” No matter what is going on in your life and no matter how hard life gets, be yourself and do what you think you should do. Don’t be overly affected by other people and things going on around you. Just listen to your heart.

“Happiness is not just at one point in time.” Enjoy every moment in your life. It’s not “work extremely hard and when you arrive at a point, you are happy.” You have to enjoy the journey.

Q: What qualities do you think make a student successful?

A: Doing what you are truly interested in and trying your best to do well in that, being hardworking, creative, brave enough to do something different, and accepting failure is a part of life. It is important to value the process and not just the outcome. Your GPA will not always guarantee you a good job. Employers care about your capabilities and what type of person you are. Positivity and motivation are great qualities, and employers want to see you will fit well into a company’s culture.

Q: What qualities do you think make a person successful?

A: Doing the right thing and being yourself. Everybody is different, and you don’t have to do everything everyone else is doing. Do things that are meaningful to you, and know that life has multiple layers. Work is not everything, and you should value all aspects of life.

Q: Do you have any advice for Newhouse students?

A: Try to get practical experiences and diversify yourself. Step out of your comfort zone and explore different areas, skills and expertise.