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Kent State University Regional Academic Center Students Blog About Sept. 11 Anniversary

Posted Sept. 19, 2011 | Jessica Smeltz 

Students in the Media, Power and Culture Class blog about Sept. 11. These students were only about 10 years old in 2001 when the attacks happened.

In commemoration of the 10th anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks, students at the Kent State University Regional Academic Center in Twinsburg, who were only about 10 years old at the time, are speaking on the events as part of their Media, Power and Culture class.

Assistant Professor Wendy Robinson, Ph.D., who teaches the journalism class, assigned her students the task of starting a blog containing five posts with their reactions to Sept. 11. In these posts, students track today’s media coverage of the anniversary and also compare and contrast the evolution of media since the event happened a decade ago. The blogs reflect the students’ opinions on a personal level, both at the time it occurred and thereafter. Students also analyze whether the media has exploited the topic over recent years.

“Sept. 11 touches on every aspect of media, power and culture,” Robinson says. “It was always a ‘media event.’ From Al-Qaeda's choices of targets and the many news gathering and reporting sources based in New York City and Washington, D.C. , much of what the world knows of 9/11 has been shaped through media representation.”

Robinson discusses how Sept. 11 was one of the major events that reflected changes to how media is used, reflected through blogging and amateur video that received wide or viral network distribution. People were snapping photographs, searching websites, trying to get information to and from one another as fast as possible. Before Sept. 11, there were few online blogs.

She explains how media today has become more viral, thanks to sources such as Twitter, YouTube, WordPress, Blogger and more. As a result, Robinson is helping and encouraging students to communicate through social media to better understand 9/11 as a media event and to explore their impressions from a decade ago.

Miranda Pomiecko, a freshman who plans to major in communication, shares her feelings about the class blogging project. “Blogging about 9/11 reveals the tremendous complexity that lies within the history of the event,” Pomiecko says. “It's an excellent way to create our own voices in a small way. It's almost like a puzzle being pieced together by the class.”

Many of the students have already completed the majority of their five posts with enthusiasm. The students will continue to document their feelings until Sept. 22 when the project is complete.

For more information about the Media, Power and Culture class project, contact Wendy Robinson at wrobins2@kent.edu.