Texas Wesleyan University professors, students, and The Rambler staff will engage with the news on October 6 during News Engagement Day (NED).
This is a day when everyone is encouraged to interact with news media and share their experiences using #NewsEngagementDay. There is also a Texas-specific hashtag, #TxNED.
The Rambler staff is excited to kick off this annual event with a scavenger hunt across social media (going on currently until NED). In addition, they will be hosting a trivia game on Tuesday, Oct. 6 at 12:15 p.m. There will be prizes for both events.
This international event was first proposed by Paula Poindexter in her 2012 book Millennials, News, and Social Media: Is News Engagement a Thing of the Past? The first News Engagement Day was later announced and kicked off on Tuesday, Oct. 7, 2014. It’s always held on the first Tuesday of October.
Hannah Onder, a senior mass communication major and Rambler staff member, said she heard about NED as soon as she joined the college newspaper when she was a freshman.
“We’ve always had some kind of news engagement thing going on in an attempt to connect college students to their news source because that is what is amplifying their voices on this campus,” Onder said.
The Rambler had decided on the scavenger hunt this year to get people interested in their social media accounts and content on their website, TheRambler.org, and then the trivia game would allow Rambler staff to interact with their audience.
Dr. Kay Colley, associate professor of mass communication, said it’s important for community organizations like The Rambler to engage with their audience.
“… Trust in the media has continued to go down; part of this initiative was to help curve that and give people an understanding of what the media do, how they do it and engage with news on that day…” Colley said.
Colley encourages students to check out TheRambler.org and The Rambler’s social media feeds every day because it is a hyperlocal news outlet, meaning it exclusively covers news for Texas Wesleyan.
“… Part of our job as faculty of mass communication is to try to keep students engaged with the news all the time because it’s important,” Colley said.
Dr. Ngozi Akinro, assistant professor of mass communication, said she is incorporating NED in her classes by having students engage with different platforms and news sources.
“Sometimes they do analysis, sometimes they get to engage by posting, sharing, commenting, … whichever way they get to participate or engage with the news, engage with different media platforms, they get to learn something about the community and the society that they live in,” Akinro said.
Akinro said that one way to keep students interested in the news is if they become mass media literate and are equipped to understand the important role that news media plays in our society.