NACAC Blogger Session

September 26, 2009 at 8:34 am Leave a comment

In Our Own Words: How to manage a student blogger program

Presented by Associate Director at Johns Hopkins.

Student admissions advisory board at Johns Hopkins is not just blogging. It’s really a social media program (blogging, YouTube, etc).

First, had to establish what the goals were, what jh wanted. Started with the freshman advisory board made up of 10 freshman who would meet with an admissions counselor. Started by discussing blogs and why/how should be done. The motivations were to more transparency, wanted to dispel rumors.

Launched Hopkins Interactive 1.0. Simple site, message board capability, blogs, etc. When starting to examine the first site, realized didn’t have enough of a reach. Launched version 2 with more bloggings, virtual tour, online chats, online videos, links to Facebook, Twitter, etc.

Today, 20 student profiles, dean of academic advising blogging, previous student blogs, fb, etc.

Program had been successful because of the students of the advisory board.

When starting the program:
-Start with freshman.
-Have an interview committee
-They are looking for creative, committed, diverse students with good interpersonal skills

Associate Director acts as an organizer/liasion between other campus constituencies. Sets the expectations, and keeps them involved in what’s going on.

When determining whether or not to pay them, think about if you need them motivate them. If you pay them, they may not be as transparent.

Group dynamics:
When managing this type of group, meet as a full group on a weekly basis, hold social events, provide leadership for students, make sure they feel equal, work on projects in smaller teams, and consider office hours for students.

Be creative when choosing what types of blogs to have: admissions, current students, guest blog, alumni, parents, faculty, deans, mascot, academics.

Could use shared blogs for freshman, letting them blog whenever and see how they perform to determine who gets a full time spot.

Has a student from each major write a blog post about their experiences so prospective students can see what the majors are like and what students studying that do.

Content: different blog entry types: introspective, retrospective, advice, day in the life.

Try to add pictures, video posts, videos of what is going on.

I am encouraged by the session because I feel like we are on the right track. We are still early in the process but we have the fundamentals down pat. I think it would be interesting to have some guest posts.

Interestingly enough, they don’t friend students ia social media because they have such a low acceptance rate (25%). They will though after they have been admitted/enroll in jh.

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Entry filed under: Higher Education. Tags: , .

NACAC 2009 Day 2 NACAC Presentation: NCAA Division III Admissions and Financial Aid

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