UWGB student promotes UW System online

UW-Green Bay senior English education major Nellie Schafer was recently chosen to represent the UWGB campus through the UW System’s Knowledge Powers Wisconsin program.

Schafer showcased the university and what it has to offer using Twitter.

Schafer impressed UW System administrators with her creative tweeting abilities.

Knowledge Powers Wisconsin program, which researches the effectiveness of each individual UW campus in the UW System and how it appeals to students across the state, created the UW Powers Me Twitter account.

It marks a new way for students, alumni, faculty and staff to share their UW experiences. It offers an interesting new insight into today’s UW campuses in the hopes of offering perspective to students from other universities and high school students.

David Giroux, executive director of communications and external relations for the UW System, is heading the campaign to find what the UW System offers the state of Wisconsin. He said their goal involves three components: a stronger workforce, stronger businesses and stronger communities.

“We want to show how the university impacts those three things,” Giroux said. “The UW Powers Me Twitter account is part of that campaign.”

He said it has been the most unique and outside-of-the-box strategy they’ve thought of so far to generate feedback from students, alumni and professors.

“A good way to explain the theory behind the page is less corporate and more organic,” Giroux said. “Instead of the university talking about how it educates 180,000 students, we want to give a voice to one student on how they are empowered by their UW experience.”

As the voice of UWGB, Schafer said her main goal in managing account for the week was to tell how students benefit from being at a UW college. It gives an outlet to students to tell their story.

Schafer utilized her week by tweeting 250 times about different things going on at the campus. She tweeted a song of the day and night, inspirational quotes, pictures of things going on and sound bites from students on campus.

“I started getting creative and contacted as many areas of the university as I could to see what they had going on,” Schafer said.

Giroux said everyone was pleased with Schafer’s tweets and her unique insight into the UWGB experience.

“Nellie was the perfect example of how one person can bring their own voice,” Giroux said. “She did an excellent job engaging people with photos and videos.”

Christopher Sampson, UWGB director of university communication, also applauded Schafer’s efforts with the Twitter page.

“Schafer was so well versed in social media,” Sampson said. “She set a very high bar for the UW campuses that are going to follow.”

Sampson said that the Twitter followers were almost doubled in the week Schafer managed the UW Powers Me page.

“The UW system administrators in Madison couldn’t get over how interesting her posts were and how prolific she was,” Sampson said. “They were very impressed.”

Sampson said when it comes to projects like this, the best sales people are going to be students.

Schafer is actively involved on campus. As an English education major, she also participates regularly in the education program on campus, has been a part of multiple organizations around campus and has been on the dean’s list.

Schafer’s enthusiasm was evident on the UW Powers Me Twitter page. She immediately gained student followers from UWGB and other universities. She also talked to many high school students who were either looking at the campus or who were already admitted to the school.

“It was a really cool experience,” Schafer said. “I didn’t know how well it was going to be received at first, but I’m glad I got the chance to showcase the university and everything it has to offer. It shows where we come from and where we’re planning to go. It is something I’m proud of, and I’m also proud of our university.”