The Daily Gamecock

Social media major smart investment

Newberry good example for other universities


Many are quick to call the education system outdated, and in most halls and classrooms, we can hear people ask, “When will I need to know this in real life?”

Newberry College is attempting to soothe those frustrations by offering an updated, relevant new curriculum. 

Starting Fall 2013, Newberry students can major in social media based on graphic design, communications, psychology and business administration, in addition to classes on social media use. This will allow students to fully utilize this mostly untapped resource.

Outside shameless promotion by celebrities, very few have figured out how to make a living from social media without owning the sites themselves. B-list celebrities tweeting about their favorite snacks should not be the only ones reaping the benefits of websites we use every day. 

It’s about time a university took a step outside, looked around at today’s business environment and took the initiative to teach something that’s becoming a much bigger part of the market.

Specializing in social media will remove the training process most corporations trudge through to have a competent social media team, and help young people become competent and business savvy in social media, which could, in turn, advance global enterprise as those companies use the Internet to make connections worldwide. As businesses learn more about using social media to make a connection with possible customers, commercials and print advertisements will become outdated and be replaced with hashtags. The two-way communication of social media allows the audience to offer feedback directly to the author, quickly informing the corporation of successes or failures, saving time and money.

People have been writing Newberry’s social media program off as a lame excuse to spend thousands of dollars to do the same things 13-year-olds have mastered. I would tell those people to look more closely at the caliber of courses these students will be taking. These professors will not simply be grading students on their abilities to Instagram pictures of food.

Nevertheless, this major needs time to grow. We need to see the first colleges work out the kinks and graduate students from the program. The broad field of social media can’t be mastered in 120 credit hours, but the major could give students the necessary tools to thrive in today’s business world. Newberry deserves respect for innovating and keeping higher education applicable to the changing world.