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January Feature

Page history last edited by Austin Almaguer 10 years, 9 months ago

January Feature:  Using Social Media to Plan and Run Service Events 


In the age of social media tools, you don’t have true friendship until it’s “Facebook official.”  From Facebook to YouTube, Twitter to Wikis, and everything in between, social media tools are a great way to stay connected with friends, family, and coworkers.  However, we in the Bonner Network aren’t just about connecting socially on the web, we have taken social media to a whole new level.  We have begun the Serve 2.0 Initiative in order to expand the impact of service and social justice in our communities.  One of the ways in which social media tools have been used at campuses around the country is to plan and run service events. 



The College of New Jersey Bonners (TCNJ) have used both internal Wikis and external public Wikis to share organize large scale service projects. Through these Wikis, TCNJ is able share info about specific sites, plan their activities, and coordinate 40 different class based service-learning projects.  TCNJ Bonner Coordinator Paula Figueroa-Vega reflects, “We had 40 professors and over 400 students mobilize to do projects related to their community on engaged learning days.”  


Below is an image of the frontpage of one of TCNJ's Wiki pages, click on the image to go to the site:




Wikis aren’t the only social media tool being used, the College of Saint Benedict Bonners (CSB) have great success using videos.  CSB is able to exceed projected attendance at events by embedding videos in emails.  They feel that videos and visual images are better able to communicate messages than simple text.  This year CSB's Empty Bowls hunger awareness event was projected to have 30 people participate, but after a video email went out to the whole campus, over 100 students showed up on the day of the event!  Regarding the use of videos coordinator Lindsey Cermak advises, “know your audience and what will grab them.  Incorporate community members to strengthen your message, choose music that reflects what you want to say, use text only when necessary, and include humor when appropriate.”  


Below is one of the videos made by the CSB Bonners, for more videos read the full interview by following the link at the bottom of the page.



While both Wikis and video have been incredibly successful, Facebook continues to be a key tool for many campuses. At Concord College, Facebook is used to promote hunger and homelessness awarenesevents through paid advertising and a profile page. The site helps connect students and community partners while keeping them informed via status updates and posted links.  Coordinator Jesse Call encourages, “Students ignore e-mails and fliers. But many of them take the time to review their Facebook. You want to make sure your information is in that.”  


Below is an image of Concord's Facebook fan page, click on the image to visit the site:



To get great tips and ideas on how to use social media tools at your campus by reading the full interviews from TCNJ, CSB, Concord, and Montclair State Click Here

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