INSTAGRAM IS NO longer just for influencers. After the campus of Saint Joseph’s University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, closed due to the pandemic, the social media platform became an essential way for students and faculty to engage remotely.
For instance, current students answered questions posed by admitted students via “Ask Me Anything” live events on Instagram. The Office of Undergraduate Admissions also used Instagram TV to post videos from students and faculty.
Students in an entertainment marketing class offered through SJU’s Haub School of Business also were able to use Instagram to continue their final class project. Normally, students in this class, which is taught by associate professor Janee Burkhalter, stage a benefit concert live on campus as their major project for the spring semester.
This year’s concert, “Rock to Remember,” had existing social media accounts that students originally had planned to use for promotional and informational purposes. But once the course moved to remote instruction, Burkhalter shifted course content to examine how musicians adjusted to lockdown by using platforms such as Instagram Live to share performances with the public. The class ultimately decided to do the same, inviting the concert’s performers to each select a night to broadcast a concert. The online concert benefited Faith, Food & Friends of Old St. Joseph’s Church, raising more than US$1,000.
Other platforms have become vital tools to help the Haub School weather the crisis. When EMBA students couldn’t take their Global Study Tour, faculty arranged for them to attend a Zoom lecture delivered by experts from P&G, Heineken, and Shell Oil in Europe. And the school’s Office of Undergraduate Admissions replaced its traditional Admitted Student Days with more than 30 webinars offered throughout April. It also used the Facebook Live feature to host a virtual campus tour in which the student body president visited different areas on campus and discussed the school’s mission and programs.