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by Ashley Hawkins, News Writing

 

Ivey, 27, and fellow PR professional Bryan Cheplic, 32, the public information officer for Lifeguards and Emergency Service Personnel in Honolulu, were visiting the HPU summer News Writing class and provided insights into their very exciting and demanding communication careers.

Ivey has been the Public Relations coordinator for all of the Queen’s Medical Health care Systems for about a year and a half. A graduate of the University of Hawai‘i at Manoa, she has a degree in broadcast journalism, and knowing one of the Channel 8 News reporters helped her get a job at the station. She started as an associate producer for the morning show, working 2 a.m. - 10 a.m., and was soon promoted to morning producer and traffic reporter.

Tired of the early hours, she accepted a temporary position at The Queen’s Medical Center, and was eventually asked to stay on as the Public Relations coordinator.

Ivey said that working at the news station helped her tremendously in her public relations job. “It helped to learn what to pitch to the media, and what angle to take.”

As the PR coordinator for Hawai‘i’s largest hospital, Ivey conducts all the media relations, writes press releases, pitches stories to news stations, conducts tours of the facilities, and schedules all events for all Queen’s medical systems clinics.

“ It’s really difficult to see people in their most tragic state, but you have to put your best foot forward and always wear a smile on your face,” Ivey said.

Cheplic graduated from UH-Manoa with a B.A. and M.A. in Organizational Communication. He worked for KITV News for five and a half years before becoming the P.I.O at the Department of Health, where he deals daily with police, fire, lifeguard, and safety incidents.

He is on call 24-hours, seven days a week and said it’s not unusual to get a phone call at 2 a.m. from media wanting to know about a specific incident that may have just occurred.

In this job, Cheplic said, it’s important to know what’s going on at all times, because he has to report on issues to Honolulu Mayor Muffi Hanneman, so that the mayor can answer media questions.

When the media calls with questions, he must be careful, Cheplic explained. He can’t give information until the appropriate time, such as after a victim’s family members have been notified. “Anything that comes out of your mouth is not only a reflection of you,” he said, “but of your organization.”

Like Ivey, Cheplic believes that working at a news outlet helped him learn what type of questions the media are going to ask, because he used to ask them, and he can be ready for them.

He also uses a very simple concept every day at work: “Treat people the way you’d want to be treated,” he said.

 

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