Miami Children’s Health Foundation (MCHF)’s 5th Annual Fashion Gives Back was a night of high-fashion and high-energy for all students of University of Miami’s Public Relations Experience Program (PREP). The event was held at the exquisite Moore Building, located in the heart of Miami’s Design District, on Thursday, Sept. 29. 

Throughout the event, PREP students managed social media accounts, assisted photographers and videographers, as well as aided in the media check-in process. PREP newcomers Micaela Rooney and Abby Hemenway worked one-on-one with event photographers to collect names of those in the photos and to ensure all shot-list criteria were met. Molly Peot and Kara Roberts were on the social media team for the evening, snapping pictures of guests and VIPs before, during, and after the event for MCHF’s Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Molly and Kara also used Periscope and Facebook Live to live stream the event. Celeste Balboni was the student manager for the event, but also assisted with the videographer and media check-in.

Even though this is the fifth year MCHF has hosted this event, it is the first year PREP has had the opportunity to participate in the event.

“It’s the first time we have the PREP team here with us and we are so grateful for PREP’s help,” said Lisbet Fernandez-Viña, director of Foundation External Affairs. “Without the PREP team, we wouldn’t be able to do the PR.” Fernandez-Viña went on to explain how the event has only grown in size over the past five years, and “without [our] students helping [them], [they] wouldn’t be able to do what [they] do.”

Erika Mayor added that PREP students have a wide variety of skills when it comes to working different types of events, “whether it’s adults at a gala or a 5K with a lot of kids, so it’s nice to see that they have a lot of range to be able to think on their feet and really be able to help out.” Mayor then explained how she’s never worried if she’s not around at media registration and an issue arises, because she has confidence in PREP students’ ability to manage the situation on their own.  

One of the most unique aspects of PREP at the University of Miami is that new opportunities and events are constantly presented, allowing the program to grow and the students themselves to gain more diverse experiences. PREP has partnered with MCHF multiple times in the past for run/walks, ladies day and gentleman’s evening events, golf tournaments, and galas, but Fashion Gives Back was a first.