According to The Washington Post, “The cost of polishing your strategic communications skills range from a few thousand for a professional certificate program to more than $30,000 for a master’s degree from Georgetown. Prospects for employment are good. The Washington region boasts a higher concentration of public relations specialists than the New York area. On average, they earn $97,000 a year, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.”

A Post story titled “How Washington became the nation’s busiest training ground for scandal PR” also stated that “there is also job security thanks to a rapidly changing media landscape where scandals — real or perceived — trend on Twitter and Facebook and consume headlines almost daily. Any gaffe — a racist comment, a poorly worded textbook, a tantruming airline executive — is now amplified by social media, where they can quickly morph from localized embarrassments into globalized causes du jour.””

“Crisis management has “become a higher art form,” stated Larry Parnell, director of the strategic public relations master’s program at George Washington University in the Post’s story.

And, continued the Post’s piece, the PR industry wants the credentials to prove it and, thus, be taken more seriously. A master’s degree, said Parnell, “goes beyond someone just being a spin artist or a flack.””

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