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Ketchum and Tsinghua University collaborate to take public relations skills training to the next level

By Wang Jinxue (People's Daily Online)

08:02, October 19, 2012

Kenneth Chu, partner and CEO of Ketchum Greater China (L), Steven Guanpeng Dong, chair and director, Institute of Public Relations and Strategic Communications, Tsinghua University (R)

Ketchum, a leading global public relations consultancy, announced a long-term partnership with China’s internationally renowned educational institution, Tsinghua University’s Institute of Public Relations and Strategic Communications on Oct. 18, 2012. Working together the two organizations will advance the professional development of employees in Ketchum’s offices in Greater China. This unique agreement, the first of its kind between a top rated public relations agency and a premier Chinese academic institution, covers a five-year period.

Under the cooperative agreement signed between Tsinghua and Ketchum, a rigorous process has been employed by which Tsinghua has reviewed the Ketchum University Greater China curriculum for 2012 and has endorsed it. The Ketchum University curriculum created especially for Greater China focuses on five key areas of learning, including creativity, strategic thinking, new business development, measurement and analytics, as well as digital and social media engagement. Tsinghua University’s extensive review of the course material and learning processes employed by Ketchum will continue on an on-going annual basis, while there will be future opportunities for additional cooperation.

Tsinghua University will also endorse Ketchum’s Gold Standard of Public Relations Professionalism in Greater China, an award for those employees who attain the agencies’ highest global standards, having completed at least 20 hours of professional training and acquired 200 Credit Points.

Ketchum Greater China recently adopted a three-tiered Credit Point System (CPS) with Bronze, Silver and Gold levels of distinction that are used globally throughout the Ketchum network. Ketchum colleagues who attain Gold level will receive a certificate signed by both Tsinghua University and Ketchum University, the agency’s learning and development function. Ketchum’s CPS is also being utilized to good effect on a worldwide basis including throughout the United States and Europe, encouraging training participation, while rewarding Ketchum’s people in a tangible way.

Kenneth Chu, partner and CEO of Ketchum Greater China, signed the Statement of Understanding (SOU) on behalf of Ketchum with Steven Guanpeng Dong, chair and director, Institute of Public Relations and Strategic Communications at the Omnicom Building, Tsinghua University.

The agreement was signed in the presence of Serge Dumont, Omnicom Group vice chairman, and chairman Asia Pacific.

“We are delighted to be partnering with Tsinghua University, the Institute of Public Relations and Strategic Communications, with strong support from Steven Dong. Together we aim to improve the overall level of public relations acumen in China,” said Robert Burnside, Ketchum partner and chief learning officer (CLO).

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