Edinboro University wins big in Niagara Awards competition



Edinboro University had a big night Nov. 18 at the 7th annual Niagara Awards – yearly competition held by the Northwestern Pennsylvania Chapter of the Public Relations Society of America at the Brewerie at Union Station in Erie.

The University’s Center for Branding and Strategic Communication captured seven awards, while the University’s Chapter of the Public Relations Student Society of America took home one and Edinboro junior Julia Carden was named PR Student of the Year.

Carden, a junior journalism major with minors in professional writing and public relations, branding and imaging and a graduate of Cambridge Springs High School, works as a digital media specialist at the Center for Branding and Strategic Communication.

She is a member of Edinboro’s PRSSA and serves as music editor and social media director for The Spectator, Edinboro’s campus newspaper.

“I think it's easy to feel like no one notices your hard work when you are a college student, so this award meant a lot to me,” said Carden, who credited Edinboro faculty members Dr. Tony Peyronel and Chris Lantinen for providing valuable experiential learning opportunities. “It was a lot of fun to meet local PR professionals and journalists and see them be recognized for the work that they do for the community.”

The Center for Branding and Strategic Communication – Edinboro’s “Beehive” in the NWPA Innovation Beehive Network – won four awards in the Marketing category and one each in the categories of Integrated Communications, Video News Release/Marketing Video and Interactive Communications.

In Marketing, gold medals were received for branding work that was done for Erie’s Blues and Jazz Festival, Hopleaf Tea Co., and local favorite Lakeside Bagel and Deli, as well as a silver for branding work done for Gone Local.

In Integrated Communications, a gold award was received for a travel website – visitedinboropa.com – and related communication campaign completed for the Edinboro Economic and Community Development organization (ECED).

Additionally, a gold was received for a digital video produced for the Presque Isle Partnership’s “MyPI 100 Challenge.” Meanwhile, the center’s podcast “Buzz, Generated” earned a silver in the Interactive Communication category.

Edinboro University PRSSA took home gold in the Special Events and Observances category for the 2019 Ryan Cappelletty Benefit Concert. Ironically, after being cancelled in 2020 due to COVID-19, that event was once again held at Molly Brannigan’s in Erie on Saturday, Nov. 20.