Second UA student claims PRWeek’s Student of the Year award


Photo courtesy of Alana Doyle

Amanda Le, Contributing Writer

The University of Alabama’s Department of Advertising and Public Relations continues to build its legacy of award-winning students after Alana Doyle, a senior majoring in public relations, was named the nation’s most outstanding public relations student by PRWeek.

Doyle, from Scottsdale, Arizona, is the University’s second PRWeek Student of the Year winner. Maret Montanari won the award in 2018, and Katie Gatti was runner-up in 2017.

Doyle, along with UA junior and public relations student Gabby DiCarlo, both made it on the short list of five students who were considered for the award. Doyle was recently announced as the finalist at this year’s annual PRWeek Awards in New York City as well.  

She said she was encouraged to apply for the award by Capstone Agency earlier this year and sought advice from last year’s winner, Maret Montanari, and agency advisor, Teri Henley.

“This entire experience has given me an even greater appreciation for The University of Alabama, the advertising and public relations department, my fellow students, friends and family,” Doyle said.

This year’s applicants were challenged to cultivate their own campaign for Levi Strauss wide-leg jeans with generation Z as the target audience. They were also required to incorporate brand activation, influencer marketing and the use of digital channels.

Doyle’s campaign, #ComfortIsBack, revolved around how comfort is an important factor when it comes to buying clothes for Gen Z. It also focused on social media influencers showcasing the brand through platforms such as Tik Tok.

By interviewing employees at influencer marketing agencies, influencers she personally knew and celebrity stylists in New York, Doyle was able to use her own primary research and insights to back up her campaign.

“Alana is highly talented and has a never-stop work ethic, which has paved the way to her being the 2019 PR Student of the Year,” said Joseph Phelps, chair of the Department of Advertising and Public Relations. “With this legacy and history of top students, it says something about the faculty that we have in this program. Their ability to help students obtain the top status in their discipline shows how much they care.”

On campus, Doyle serves as a senior copywriter for Capstone Agency, is an executive officer for Public Relations Council of Alabama (PRCA), was on the executive board for the National Society for Collegiate Scholars and was an executive officer for her sorority, Delta Gamma. She was also selected as Viacom’s only intern to work the pink carpet at the 2018 Video Music Awards (VMAs).

Upon graduation this May, Doyle will be pursuing a media coordinator role with Ketchum’s Global Media Network in New York City. She will advise all the client teams coming to the global media network and give advice on how to pitch to the media.