Michigan State University
Michigan State University
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Department of Writing, Rhetoric, and American Cultures
Department of Writing
Rhetoric & American Cultures

WRA 320 Students Create Educational Campaigns for REHS

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WRA 320 students Alistair Poole, Hatch Jasper, Casey Mcdougall, and  Kennedy Cutler make their presentation to REHS staff.

This semester students in WRA 320 [Digital and Technical Writing] applied their technical writing skills for a partnership with MSU’s Residence Education Housing Services (REHS). The partnership put student online security and safety at the forefront with the goal of educating MSU students, particularly incoming freshman, about the ways their online privacy is undermined and how they can protect themselves. WRA 320 student Katie Nicpon describes the work this way: “At the heart of our project is empowering our fellow Spartans to participate in our online communities in safer ways and to add to the conversation around privacy and safety.”

Course instructor Les Hutchinson, a Ph.D candidate in Rhetoric and Writing, designed the course to help make information about online data and privacy more accessible to students. “One of the main problems with this information is that there’s so much to learn, and issues related to data privacy contain a lot of technologically-complex language and practices,” she says. For Hutchinson, learning about online safety was crucial after being doxed and harassed while doing online research for her Master’s thesis.

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WRA 320 students Hayden Harris, Suzanna Smentowski, Zoe Schubot, and Katie Nicpon make their presentation to REHS staff.

In order to create educational content that will be useful to their fellow Spartans, the class split up into five teams, each focused on a different theme: General Online Safety, Simple Ways to Protect Yourself, Social Media Safety, Online Professionalism and Safety, and Real Versus Fake Online.

The students then created campaigns for each theme and presented proposals to REHS staff including Natisha Foster, REHS Safety and Security Services Coordinator, and Josh Carrasquillo, REHS Communications Manager. These campaigns will be rolled out by REHS in the upcoming academic year, so keep a look out for the work of these WRAC students on the LiveOn social media!

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WRA 320 students and instructor Les Hutchinson.

 

Written by Rachel Nanzer

Photos by Sarah Mitchell