By ERIC A. HOWALD
Of the Keizertimes
A group of McNary High School students has taken on a monumental task this semester: making high school cool in the digital realm.
Students in a new digital marketing class have spent the past month creating content for the Celtic presence on Twitter and Facebook through videos, photos and infographics, all of it paving the way for a new website that will soon replace the existing one.
“We are trying to get as many people as we can to go online and like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter, but to do that we have to make it as cool as we can,” said Maddysen Vandewalker.
Feeding the social network beast and trying to reach all 2,000 students is no small task, and it’s paving the way for surprising lessons for the students involved.
“It’s really fast-paced,” said student Andronick Martusheff. “When we are putting up the news we try to get the most important stuff out there as fast as possible to get people interested.”
Vandewalker has discovered just how much editing of film and video she can do on her phone.
It’s also provided insight into how social networks function well in terms of grabbing attention.
“I think a lot more about what I put online, especially on Twitter and Instagram,” said Chloee Calhoun. “I’m more careful about what I put there, but I also try to make it more simple and easy to understand.”
Students are given three options when it comes to creating content: they can make a video, create an infographic, or write-up a brief story to accompany a picture.
“I like doing the infographics,” Martusheff said. “I started playing around with Photoshop a while ago and liked being able to create my own thing off a blank slate.”
He’s currently developing a new opening sequence for the Celtic News Network, and he’s collaborating with music producer Giancarlo Marcelo.
Marcelo got his start taking a recording arts class at McNary that taught him how to use computer software to make beats, he’s now putting that knowledge to use for the school.
“I like hip hop and jazz, but not every instrumental is going to sound that way. I’ve had to learn to produce other types of beats, like doing a news opening,” Marcelo said.
One of Marcelo’s tasks is helping to create a library of music that future producers can draw from whenever it’s needed, without having to worry about copyright infringements.
While the goal is to draw in a larger audience, Vandewalker said even she has grown more appreciative of what she and her classmates are doing.
“Most of the time I go home knowing I have to make a payment or something for a class and then I forget, but I look through the @CelticTerritory Twitter and the reminder is right there. I’m grateful to have it,” Vandewalker said.
To keep up on all the latest happenings, visit celticterritory.com, “like” Celtic Territory on Facebook, subscribe to Celtic Territory on YouTube, or follow @celticterritory on Twitter and Celtic_Territory on Instagram.