News Engagement Day was created on October 4, 2014 by the president of the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication, Paula Poindexter, according to newsengagement.org. The day was created in hopes to make the news a priority in the eyes of the public again by raising awareness and encouraging exploration of news in all ages. According to a Pew Research Center survey 29% of young adults have no news interaction. This is worrying not only to the people having their career involved in the industry but to the public as well. News not only provides information on multiple platforms for the people but it also plays the important roles of being a watchdog on government and demonstrating First Amendment rights for the people as well. Therefore, the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication deemed October 4th News Engagement Day in order to lead the revival effort of making news a national priority. The Association of Education in Journalism and Mass Communications sponsors the day and pushes people to read, watch, like, tweet, post, text, email, listen to, comment, or do whatever kind of interaction they want with news for the day.
Texas Wesleyan participated in the third annual News Engagement Day in order to promote student engagement with the school’s print and online news The Rambler and television station Rambler TV. The school’s mass communication department planned an event at the mall where students would be able to get information, work samples, and free food while engaging with their peers who work in the news field already. I think hosting it during free period at the mall was a smart because it was in the center of campus and providing free lunch during lunch time. I feel like this prompted extra audience members on top of the students already planning to go and the students forced to go for class. The audience was made up of mostly students looking for information on the school news or looking for a free Chick-fil-A sandwich.
I think a major theme shown by the behavior of the audience is students only participate in something if it interests them or free food is involved. While working the booth I noticed students either lingered for a while asking several questions because they were curious about the student news or they quickly sat through a presentation and snatched the sticker to hurry off and get their free sandwich.
As said I stated earlier the event was organized in order to promote news, more specifically the student run Rambler print, online, and TV to students and staff on campus. The event was most likely organized by the mass communications department since the event is sponsored by the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication. I do for sure know The Rambler employees worked the table set for our organization. At The Rambler table employees gave students an overview of their work, gave them a sample of the latest paper, provided places to ways to get updates, as well as gifting them free candy and two of the six stickers required to get a free sandwich.
I feel like the event was successful because it brought in a decent crowd of students and many of them signed up for alerts or followed social media tying back to The Rambler. I do believe there was room for improvement since there was still Chick-fil-A sandwiches left at the end of the event meaning the target of 100 students was not reached. I think that the event could improve in the number of attendees next year. This could be done by doing better advertising for the event ahead of time. I worked the event and didn’t even know about it until a week before. I didn’t see it on social media until the day before the event took place. Therefore if more people were informed about it sooner more people could have made arrangement in the schedule to come and get engaged in our news.