DU hits social media milestone

newchartwebBy Jill Power | The Duquesne Duke

Thanks to a 241 percent surge in Duquesne’s social media following, the University’s official Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Youtube pages have accumulated a collective 10,000 followers.

All four of Duquesne’s social media outlets are monitored and updated by Duquesne’s Office of Public Affairs. David Jakielo, a former Duquesne student employed by public affairs, is responsible for updating and monitoring the school’s Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Youtube pages.

Jakielo keeps track of monthly changes in followers, and derived the 241 percent follower increase by comparing the number of followers in Dec. 2012 to the number of followers acquired through Dec. 2013.

The University decides which social media outlets to use by looking at “what we can reasonably sustain and what people are using,” Vice President of the Office of Public Affairs Bridget Fare said.

Each of the pages offers a different presentation of events on campus and Duquesne itself. The Facebook and Twitter accounts provide academic and athletic updates. They are also used to promote the achievements and endeavors of faculty and students.

Duquesne’s Instagram account is used in conjunction with events on campus. Students are being encouraged to send in photos they’ve taken to be featured on the page. Campus events, such as December’s Night of Lights, are the focus of the majority of the pictures.

Duquesne’s Youtube account, touting over 16,000 total views on 46 different videos, caters to prospective students, parents or those who want to know more about a specific area or school on campus. Some examples of popular segments are “Discover DU,” which highlights different events on and off campus, and “Campus Q&A,” a student reaction series.

More campus groups are utilizing social media to reach out to students, parents and the community. Duquesne’s 2013 Orientation team used social media to encourage incoming students to interact with each other and team leaders throughout the week.

“We used [Twitter] for reminders during the week as well as challenges, like ‘Go find a chair member who can play the saxophone,’ and we would reward them with Burgh-Bucks,” 2013 Orientation Team co-chair Jade Litzel said.

The app could only be downloaded from the University’s website and was created in conjunction with public affairs. Jakeilo helped develop the app.

“The demographics of the kids at orientation were people who had smart phones,” Jakeilo said.

The app featured a schedule of events and allowed students to sync their Instagram accounts in order to more rapidly share pictures both on Instagram and within the app.

“I think interactivity helps a million times over,” Litzel said. “Students feel comfortable using it, so any event that utilizes it kind of puts them at ease.”

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