Evaluating Edinboro: Burrows looks to improve website, enhance Boro social media presence

Category:  News
Wednesday, October 4th, 2017 at 9:35 PM
Evaluating Edinboro: Burrows looks to improve website, enhance Boro social media presence by Shayma Musa
Contributed Photo

Angela Burrows — new assistant vice president for communications, community and public relations, and marketing — says that the next few months will be a time of evaluation.

“In the next few months, I will be evaluating where we are in terms of communications and also work with an outside company to see what we need to improve on.”

Burrows left Susquehanna University after over six years as their director of communications.

“I chose to come to Edinboro University because I felt that it was a place where I could really make a difference,” Burrows said.

The most important aspect of her  job going forward, Burrows said, is to “capture the message of the 10-year plan (announced by university President H. Fred Walker in September) and adequately portray the student experience here at Edinboro.”

In order to do that, Burrows lists improvements to the university website, work on the social media presence and marketing campaigns as being key.

“I think that we will continue to evolve our social media presence; we will be using social media as a tool to better market Edinboro to future students. The website is, however, the be-all and end-all; it’s the first place that prospective students go when they want to learn more about our university.”

As Burrows evaluates the state of communications at Edinboro, she says going forward the most important thing will be reducing the number of words and instead incorporating the use of infographics into communications.

“Keeping the audience in mind as we make these changes is important. The website and social media aren’t for us [the administration], it’s for the students and for prospective students.”

Burrows says in order to keep the interests of students in mind going forward, she will speak with student focus groups to better understand what would help them.

Retention is also an issue that Burrows sees as being important to her department. “I think a large part of not being able to retain students is about not communicating the resources that we have available for them as a university. As we improve external and internal communications [we’re] making sure that easily being able to locate available resources is something that will be kept in mind.”

Diversity is also a major issue Burrows feels the communications department can take a stance on:

“In the past year, there were events at Susquehanna involving Confederate flags and swastikas, and students were not feeling comfortable, or welcomed in the community. One of the things that I oversaw was a ‘diversity summit,’ which I worked on until I left and all over the summer, [and it] was an event that we were working on collectively with Bucknell University, Geisinger Health Center, and a number of local employers to basically say: collectively we are not going to tolerate bias, and we are committed to working together to achieve diversity in the broader community.

The summit itself was an event that was intended as kind of a kickoff for a longer- term effort to increase understanding and to create a more inclusive and respectful environment in the broader community.”

In promoting and increasing diversity and understanding of different cultures at Edinboro, Burrows said: “This administration clearly believes that it is all about the students — that includes making sure that students are supported in every way, feel comfortable, welcomed and included here. And I have to say that there is a lot more diversity here than there was there (at Susquehanna). However, not only is it the right thing to do, and not only is the university committed to diversity and inclusion and mutual respect and understanding, but also the world is totally different now. We need to make sure that we are preparing students for a global world; certainly, a part of that is making sure that there is exposure to a broad range of different cultures while on campus.”

Going forward, Burrows plans to evaluate the demographics on campus in order to better understand how to,“frame our narrative.” Burrows began in her position on Sept. 11.

Shayma Musa is the copy editor for The Spectator. She can be reached at eupnews.spectator@gmail.com. 

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