Newhouse Public Relations Student Forms Special Connection With Hill Communications Client

I’ll never forget the sheer excitement I felt when I found out I had been accepted as an intern as a first-year student at Hill Communications. There is something incredibly validating about joining an esteemed student-run organization like Hill Comm, especially when your eagerness to contribute and learn matches their enthusiasm for your future with the firm. Moving over 2,000 miles from home to study public relations at the Newhouse School was a gamble, particularly in the isolating wake of COVID-19, but suddenly, it felt like everything was falling into place. I had found my new home.

a person stands posed with their arms crossed
Hayley Ipsaro

Hill Communications holds a special place in the hearts of both students and faculty for many reasons. It offers students the chance to apply their classroom knowledge and skills to real, paying clients, representing Newhouse as part of a Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA)-affiliated and nationally recognized student-run PR agency. Hill Comm is one of the many organizations that sets Newhouse apart, and contributing to it throughout my college career has been an honor.

Those who know me well know I love a challenge. When asked which client team I preferred to join among the many incredible clients Hill Comm had in the Fall 2020 semester, I chose the one that pushed me most out of my comfort zone: GreenHill Investment Reporting. My knowledge of the financial technology space was minimal, and terms like “family office” or “RIA” were foreign to me. However, I was determined to learn quickly and see my work in action.

GreenHill made that goal a reality. From day one, our clients were invested in us as students and PR practitioners. They understood the complexities of the industry and provided every resource we needed to succeed. Even as an intern, I felt valued and appreciated by both GreenHill and my team. My ideas were implemented, and I gained hands-on experience that very first semester. By the end of that semester, I knew I was here to stay.

Now finishing my eighth semester with the team as account supervisor, I’m proud to say I did. Looking back on the work we have been able to facilitate for GreenHill over the past four years is beyond impressive. Multiple press releases, a complete rebrand, countless hours put towards competitor and industry audits and most recently, AI platform integration to create branded product demos and knowledge management resources for GreenHill customers — just to name a few. Our work for our clients takes what we learn in the classroom and pushes it another step higher.

a person smiles and sits in a chair in a conference room surrounded surrounded by other smiling people standing and sitting
Ipsaro (seated, center) is honored by team members of her Hill Comm client, GreenHill Investment Reporting. (Photo courtesy of Hayley Ipsaro)

On April 18, I welcomed Bill McFadden and Harry Cubit of GreenHill Investment Reporting to Syracuse University for an in-person visit to film social media content and play out new ideas, something that has become a biannual tradition over the years. Unbeknownst to me, this day had a little more in store than a final workshop with my favorite clients. A Zoom screen popped up with my entire family, Hill Comm alum and GreenHill’s Jack Curran and Melissa Cubit, who all took time out of their busy days to celebrate me.

Former team members of mine and our wonderful faculty advisors began to fill the room. I was absolutely floored, humbled and beyond grateful, though most of what I could get out in the moment were thank yous between tears of joy. I was awarded a plaque for my contribution and dedication to GreenHill over the last four years, surrounded by so many of the people I love, and it is a day I will never forget.

Reflecting on my journey with Hill Communications and GreenHill Investment Reporting, I am filled with immense gratitude and pride. These past four years have not only shaped my professional skills but have profoundly impacted my personal growth. I have learned the true value of perseverance, the importance of stepping out of my comfort zone and the power of human connection. As I prepare to enter this next chapter of my life, I carry with me invaluable experiences, cherished memories and lasting relationships. I am deeply thankful for the opportunities and support I have received, and I look forward to embracing the future with the confidence and knowledge that Hill Comm and GreenHill have instilled in me. Leaving Syracuse and Newhouse, I have so very much to be grateful for.

Hayley Ipsaro ’24 is an alumna of the public relations program at the Newhouse School