2021 HBCU Students Manage Your Digital Content Part 2
William Jackson My Quest To Teach
Graduate of South Carolina State University
Past HBCU Professor Edward Waters College 2004-2017
Current Professor of Digital Media and Social Media
Florida State College of Jacksonville
The changes of technology are demanding HBCU schools
to reinvest in how they teach their technology and education
students to meet real world learning environments. Too many
times students have been seen lacking in basic skills and
knowledge to compete in the world that embraces digital
media, social media innovation, Podcasting, Micro-blogging,
traditional Bloggers that have the literary skills to be
taken seriously and that the Arts needs to be integrated
into the digital environments of the academic curriculums.
Video-blogging and the level of content creation must be
elevated so HBCU students do not seem out of place or our
of their league. Changes do not just affect education where
too many think that tech has profound influence. Gaming,
Gamification, Virtual Reality (VR) and Artificial Intelligence (AI)
are future now elements that HBCU students need to understand
their place in learning and thought leadership.
Many times you hear the roar of ovation and joy when HBCU
students are involved in gaming competitions, but rarely do
you hear this same thunderous excitement when academic
levels are achieved. There still needs to be the same
enthusiasm you hear at gaming and sports events shared at
celebrating our HBCU Geeks, Nerd, Blerd and Innovators.
Teaching at Edward Waters College from 2004 to 2017, it
has been found that students entering into their first years,
lacked the skills, knowledge and even creativity to participate
in digital media on a consistent and confident level. Providing
them project based learning means in the beginning holding
their hands (figuratively) until they are comfortable with the
concepts and principles and even disciplines that come with
Addressing the elements of individual and group learning
should be part of the project development process, because
what needs to be taught early is the respect for everyone’s
thinking that should be unique, authentic and out of the box.
Teaching students blogging on WordPress, teaching lessons
from digital sites like KidsHealth.org, participating in, watching,
analyzing and engaging in TEDTALK events with TEDxFSCJ
with recommending students to speak where
1 EWC student and 1 Duval County Public School Middle School
student participated making history. Their (Jon – EWC student,
Elisha – DCPS student) participation and contribution changed
the views of both educational institutions from being less than
able to participate at these levels to representing both in a world
class level of cognitive development and thought leadership.
Unfortunately no other students wanted to follow or participate.
Events like these helped build EWC students into leadership
roles as its first teacher in the NASA Teacher Recertification
Program at Edward Waters College (William Jackson) where
teachers from Duval County Public School participated in a
summer training program and even a weekend program
preparing teachers for the growing digital use of technology
to teach rising digital natives of Jacksonville.
The NASA programs was used to prepare urban teachers
how to teach with technology to students that lack technical
skills and use both low level and high level technical tools.
Using technology to meet the needs of the students, not the
students meeting the needs of the technology.
Strategies to help build digital knowledge leaders for HBCU
students. That I developed teaching at the historic EWC.
Creative digital innovation and thought leadership are important
tools to make sure HBCU students are prepared for the
educational, business and digital environments of the future.
Strategies to Apply
1. Post content often when blogging to show you are consistent
in creating content and building your readers. Quality is better
than quantity. Try your best to plan when and where you are
posting. Use multiple platforms and be sure to check your SEO
and Accessibility levels of engagement.
2. Link freely from your site to others and let them know
you are doing so. Collaboration can build partnerships and
3. Verify content with some research that builds credibility.
Don’t rely on just your knowledge read what others are
doing and where they are going. Connect with groups that
are focused on your passions as an HBCU student to build
your PLN: Professional Learning Network to find out where
the careers are early. Where you will be welcomed and nurtured.
4. Don’t criticize harshly, use your content to build, empower,
encourage and educate. It is so easy to criticize things when they
are not working right, but it takes vision and empathy to try to
help others on the path to success and seeing what they are
doing is bigger than both them and you.
5. Take the time to volunteer in your community and share
your knowledge. Allow the community to see the face of the
content creator. If there are to be role models, the role models
need to be seen and have a relationship with the next generation.
Giving back and paying forward with community service.
6. Offer solutions to issues and problems and be willing to
speak more about them. “If your not part of the solution
your part of the problem.” R. Lee Gordon
7. Encourage networking and connecting. Each of my classes
are required to blog, register for a LinkedIn account and network
at community events to show the power of uniting and working
8. Show the benefits of diversity and accepting others that
are different. Why embracing diversity is a powerful tool
to bring about change. Give girls and women a fair chance
to share their skills, talents and knowledge.
9. Volunteering helps build your personal Brand and allows
people to see your ability and potential for leadership.
10. Build relationships that foster current and future
involvement. Youth, teens and young adults need to learn
these lessons early that it is not about being popular and
everyone likes you, it is about being accountable, responsible,
reliable and scalable.
11. Develop your Brand and grow your Brand by community
activism and awareness. People love to see youth, teens
and young adults active and engaged for social justice.
12. Instructors at HBCUs should be active in events in the
community to inspire creativity, a love for learning and
that learning happens outside of the classroom.
13. The HBCU instructor if the public media person because
their presence at events and activities speaks volumes.
When I attended events I was sure to have something that
represented Edward Waters College to show where I came from.
14. Creating a Social Media calendar to post content on
a regular timeline. Everyone needs scheduling help, a calendar
is the perfect tool.
15. Using CMS Content Management Software to schedule
posts and manage SEO and other content data information.
16. Even during the pandemic participate in virtual learning
conferences like Florida Blogging and Technology Conference,
WordCamp and KidsCamp conferences and other virtual tech
17. HBCUs that are associated with a ministry should provide
cross posting of links in their social media and digital
platforms to support the vision and mission of the ministry
18. HBCUs should highlight their academic students and those
showing great improvements. That inspires the students and
is great networking for families and others deciding if they
19. HBCU institutions should be constantly networking with
multi-national and global companies to keep abreast of what
the industries want in students. How students should be
prepared and what is new in that industry.
20. Students need to be sent to conferences, workshop,
seminars and other community events to learn outside the
classroom in real world situations.
21. Learning should be real, relevant and reliable to
make sure the student is prepared before they graduate.