Profile: IABC’s Student Communicator of the Year Award

Profile: IABC’s Student Communicator of the Year Award

By: Alex Lowe
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SFU’s own Alex Lowe was the recipient of the 2013 Student Communicator of the Year Award in the Electronic and Digital Communications Category for her re-branding of the SFU Volunteer Services Newsletter during her Co-op term as a Volunteer Services Assistant at SFU.  The Student Communicator of the Year Award or, SCOY, is a prestigious award given out by the International Association of Business Communicators (IABC) exclusively to their student members to recognize excellence in communication. The award is designed to support students with their experiential learning through professional feedback, and recognition.  To learn more about the award, see previous winners’ work, and find out how to get involved, check out the IABC website. Below, Alex has outlined some of her key learning outcomes in participating in the SCOY contest process.

How a SCOY Helped my Co-op Experience – by Alex Lowe

Besides the fact that any type of award in your professional field can help drive your career, the Student Communicator of the Year award (also known as SCOY) has many other benefits. Of all these benefits, the one I found most helpful is being able to think critically about any project or task you are doing and find measureable ways to justify your actions, whether or not it was successful. 

What is a SCOY? The SCOY award was re-structured by the IABC/BC chapter a few years ago. Any student currently enrolled can submit a 2-3 page work plan of a communications related project that they did during a co-op term, volunteer experience or internship. All participants receive feedback on their work plans from communication professionals. Winners receive a scholarship, an invite to the swanky Bronze Quill Gala, a personalized trophy and recognition on the IABC/BC website and social media channels. 

Why is it helpful? During my current co-op experience at Samsung, I found the framework I had implemented for my SCOY work plan could apply to all projects that I was assigned. My supervisor was impressed with the level of detail and well thought out measurement techniques for our goals and objectives. When I got an opportunity to research and create my own proposal to implement SEO (search engine optimization) best practices for our website, I found myself depending on my SCOY work plan for a framework to begin my proposal. The end result was a well-rounded proposal that reflected many of the same categories as my previous SCOY work plan, even though it was for a different organization and completely different project.

Interested in applying for SCOY? Work plans must be submitted by April 30, 2014 so there is still plenty of time to apply! SCOYs are a great way to improve your resume, add to your portfolio and learn how to think critically about the communication-related work you are doing.

Posted on March 14, 2014