I’m INCREDIBLY excited to be presenting with Vernon Wall this weekend to do a combined talk on social justice and social media for both the students and the faculty/staff at Longwood University. I know some people have presented on this topic before, but I think what Vernon and I have come up with is something that is truly unique in this space. We are not just talking about the issues, but training people on it. We’ve taken Vernon’s proven training in social justice and layered it with my research and expertise in social media. The result is a true social justice training that you might hire for your staff or students with a social media twist.
As we’ve been planning these presentations, it has been exciting to note the synergy between concepts in both areas. For instance, social justice is best understood as both a goal and a process. It is something to which we aspire and that is ongoing work we must engage in within ourselves and with others. Likewise, you can also understand social media as both a tool and a context. It is something that can be used to achieve an end, but it is also a fluid changing context where community is built and people interact. There are many more deep (and sometimes surprising) synergies, but I don’t want to give away too much. Vernon and I are talking about making this available to other campuses and perhaps as a professional conference session in the future. Stay tuned.
First up for us will be a session with faculty and staff where we will discuss issues found on campus, 5 key concepts to help frame and understand them, and then provide guidance for how to work through them.
On Saturday, we’ll be presenting the keynote address to the student Social Justice in Action Leadership Summit. This presentation will combine core competencies, messages, and activities around diversity, multiculturalism and social justice. We are focusing on 6 key concepts students need to know and how these concepts play out in their digital lives.
I will also be presenting a conference session later in the day to engage students in thinking about how they view themselves online and what this means for social change and action. As with social justice training, you must first look inward before looking outward. The same holds true with understanding yourself on social media and when using it for social good and change.