With social media playing an ever-expanding role in society, the Loras Media Studies program has continued to grow by finding innovative ways to make sure students stay ahead of the curve as they move into their careers.
A key element to that initiative is the media Convergence course, led by Associate Professor of Media Studies Seth Myers. The course blends content creation specifically for social media with analysis of engagement, analytics, and consumer behavior. It develops student understanding of the professional use of social media along with the applications and tools necessary to fully realize those platforms in preparation for career development.
“Students are excited and engaged,” he said. “Our majors are thrilled that our program is advancing in this direction and taking the necessary steps to prepare them for the media world they are going to be entering. Our students are amazing and hardworking and have responded well to the ‘learn by doing’ philosophy we pride ourselves on.”
“We are all collectively learning as the pace of technology is moving at an incredible speed, so the students are personally motivated to address current media trends and the changing media environment they are experiencing in their everyday lives. Our program focuses on creative storytelling in a myriad of ways, and they have communicated to faculty that the course opens up immediate opportunities they might not have considered.”
Professor of Media Studies Craig Schaefer (’89) explained, “It’s critical that students who are making creative content understand the ways that digital communication is continuing to influence so many facets of our lives, whether that be in journalism, creative storytelling, or promotion. This course addresses those needs in very concrete ways, and we’re fortunate to have Professor Myers leading that effort. He sees the big picture and brings that understanding to classroom in very tangible ways.”
The class covers a wide variety of social media platforms, as well mobile filmmaking, artificial intelligence, E-commerce, Google Analytics, and target advertising.
“The varied subject matter provides media studies students the opportunity to understand the marketplace from a broad perspective,” Myers said. “Students also study audience trends for the content they produce in class, analyze content engagement, employ target advertisements, and most importantly navigate and create content for social media, ethically and authentically.”