Students Helping Students

Toward the end of last semester, K-State Proud approached me about being their “Honorary Co-Chair.” Usually this is somebody who is well-known and respected throughout the K-State community. The former co-chair was our popular basketball coach Frank Martin, and before that it was (now retired) University President Jon Wefald, so obviously it was a great honor to be approached about this. But looking at my research and teaching schedule, I was hesitant to get involved. At the time, I thought K-State Proud was just a t-shirt selling campaign. It seems like everybody has one of those “K-State Proud” t-shirts. I think they are great shirts, but its just a shirt, and I’m thinking that I’m way too busy to be selling t-shirts.

It wasn’t until I sat down with students from the K-State Proud committee that I found out what Proud is really all about. Every dollar goes toward student scholarships, most of which helps students stay in school when all of their other resources are tapped out. Over the past 3 years, students have donated over $250,000 to keep their fellow students in school when they need it most, like when their house has been taken by a tornado, their belongings have been taken by a flood, or when a serious illness drains them of their last dollar and the will to go on. Most importantly, it even helps those students who are perpetually struggling financially to stay at K-State.

Meanwhile, the new semester was quickly approaching, and I needed to design my crash course in digital storytelling for my incoming Digital Ethnography students. Most students come in with little or no digital video background, so each year I design a 4 week program that allows them to complete their first mini-project before moving on to creating their major semester project. Like always, I want the mini-project to be more than just another assignment. It has to matter to them and to the world. The Proud campaign seemed like a perfect match. We contacted former Proud winners and matched each of my incoming students with one of them. Each student then created a short video vignette about the Proud winner. We arranged interviews with a cancer survivor, a Katrina survivor, and many others who have overcome more than their share of struggles and still remain here at K-State. I was personally surprised to find so many of my favorite students on the list of former Proud Award winners. And without Proud, they would have never been in my classes.

But we still needed to show the K-State Community that Proud is more than just a shirt – that it is students helping students. And that’s where the Flash Mob of Kindness comes in. What you see in the video is 100 students coming together, pooling their money, and then running all over campus using that money to perform random acts of kindness for other students. It is simply a way of acting out what K-State Proud really does. When a student gets a Proud Award, it is as if the entire student body has pitched in a little bit to help them out, just like you see in the video. In all, it made for a crazy fun day, and I’m sure if you talked to any of the students involved, they would tell you it was well worth the money they donated just for the experience alone. Three weeks later, the video is edited and ready to go, just in time for the Proud Rally to be held tonight in the Student Union.

One last pedagogical note: activities like this make for a great first day of any digital storytelling / media class by giving students some experience in online organizing and planning, handling a camera, and also allowing them to bond with each other through a fun experience. And in the three weeks since that first day, the students have been meeting with their Proud Award winning partner, recording interviews, and shaping video vignettes like this:


K-State Proud Award Winner Kala Raglin (by David Westfall)


K-State Proud Award Winner Hannah McSpadden (by Shane Oram)


K-State Hero Award Winner Rachel Day (by Kristin Russell)

More coming soon!

You can learn more about the Proud program at www.k-stateproud.org.

Wesch

Associate professor of cultural anthropology. Ed Traceur. Hacker. Car-free.

You may also like...

29 Responses

  1. monika hardy says:

    One of my all time fav videos… students helping students. You guys inspire…

  2. Sarah Strickland says:

    Absolutely fantastic. Students helping students = people helping people. All too easy to forget that goodness exists concretely.

    Reaffirming

    Also – what a great way to introduce a course. Learning how to use the tools available and realising their capacity.

    Nice

  3. Galia says:

    This program sounds great
    really inspires me to do the same in my surroundings

    Thanks

  4. Charlie Roy says:

    I’ve been following your youtube channel and the work of your classes for well over a year and I am incredibly interested in the work you are doing. Your “students helping students” video prompted me to contact Robert Swift about how I can donate to the campaign and how I can find out more about it to try to inspire an initiative like it in my local universities.

    After speaking with Robert for over an hour tonight (by video on Skype no less!) about how the K-State PROUD campaign started, what the challenges have been, and its immense benefits, I am convinced that we should emulate this project at our schools. Personally, I am no longer a university student, I graduated in 2007 from Brandon University (Brandon, Manitoba, Canada) but I work closely with students, alumni and student groups at BU and the University of Winnipeg.

    Prof. Wesch, thank you for accepting the role as Honourary Co-Chair, I may never have found out about this campaign if you hadn’t. We’re going to follow K-State’s lead and inspire our fellow students to action and fellowship, but for now, we’ll pool some money together to donate to the K-State PROUD campaign. Students helping students right?

    Cheers,
    Charlie

  5. To all of you connected to K-State Proud – thank you! As a graduate (76) of UWisconsin Madison, I always took pride in my fellow students for their numerous contributions to the world following graduation. We were always known for sending the most people into the Peace Corps and other similar pursuits. While I’m sure many also participated in plentiful random acts of kindness while in school, their generosity was primarily at the individual level. You have generated a “systems intelligence” that is breathtaking because it is so enlivening no only for the specific individuals who are affected but for the larger community.

    For the past 25 years, my colleagues have focused on collective intelligence and wisdom – particularly how to nurture it. It has been our belief that it is critical for the “system to see itself” to make these collective capacities sustainable. I was very moved by the simplicity and power of your approaches to recognize needs and resources, and to put them together for good.

    I am curious about one thing – and that is whether there is any shared religious or spiritual foundation that you share. For many people, one of the easiest ways to recognize that we’re all connected is to also appreciate that there’s something bigger than all of us that provides that connection.

    I want to thank you for the wonderful example you have provided (and shared) about what it means to be a human being in community in today’s world. I hope we’ll see more “proud” initiatives everywhere!

  6. JHS MassComm says:

    hello,
    we were wondering if someone could possibly join in on our “weBLAB”
    we are doing a research into YouTube and tge aspects of it, if someone can email us at jsc613@gmail.com . Thank You in advance.

    -JHS MassComm Class

  7. Dr Jude says:

    What a wonderful way to make a difference in the world. My business students at UW-Milwaukee have been inspired by your work. Thanks for sharing and keep on making our world a better place.

  8. What a great way to help, inspire and teach all in one project – and you captured the emotion of it all for us to enjoy. Thanks for the lift!

  9. Helena Prieto says:

    Hi,
    I simply loved the way this project was developed with the recording of the video to go online as an example of how students can get together to solve a social problem and by doing so become their own heroes. This solidarity movement, I’m sure will grow worldwide because what you have accomplished is prove of what people can do when they engage in group work and go out of the school walls to the real world.
    The funny thing is that by using video we can not only record our work but also show it to other and give an example to others. I also realized that this broadcasting method is great for everyone to show themselves and add value to their work and schools. You video is also a great advertisement.

  10. Hello, Mike Wesch Teachers, we are a working group of the Master in Pedagogy of E-learning at the Open University – Portugal.

    For unity “Network Society” and through our teacher Antonio Teixeira, we learned of its existence and its excellent work around the Web influence on education and culture worldwide.

    After viewing some of your videos and website, where we put some comments, the result of teamwork, we find its concern to show the world the impacts included in the network society.

    Through videos simple, but highly significant, can show us the changes that occur in this mediated world, making us change social processes breaking the cultural past.

    We realized easily, from the message you want to address. Sure that their students, take delight in having a teacher with this dynamic entrepreneur.
    Sure that we will follow this path that we decided to go.
    We wish you continued excellent work she does.
    Yours sincerely

    TEAM 2 (Grupo 2)

    Ana Torres
    Carla Maria Elias
    Joaquim Pinto
    Miguel Nuno Oliveira
    Tercília Assis

  11. APedro says:

    Dear Michael Wesch,

    I’m posting a comment to your interesting video that was written in a group work by the students that are attending the Masters in Elearning Pedagogy of Open University in Portugal (www.univ-ab.pt).

    I’d like to inform you that if you decide to answer us, it will be posted in the discussion forum of our virtual class.

    Best regards,
    APedro

    Here’s our comment:
    This video is striking the theme of cooperative and it is interesting to see how these young ones work together to assist each other in various tasks. This behaviour seems newness to us but not so much for students who attend that university. What is new? So fast is formed a group, as then it fells apart, and it seems no one shows surprise at this “phenomenon”. Wesch wants to show the necessity to pass inside classroom this type of experience (the cooperativism) and therefore, this researcher understands perfectly what the cognitivist movement of modern school poses as the foundation of education: THE PROCESS. In this video it is perceived the involvement to make something of the educational community, through its mode of action that denotes the organization, planning and significance. We are much more closer together when we strive to accomplish something. Thus it reinforces the idea of group, the sense of belonging and the interaction between everyone who is in the network; and a space is opened for collaboration and cooperation, focusing mainly in the community aspect. But have these students learned these attitudes / behaviours from their teachers? It seems that in this university the knowledge is primarily builded by the student community.

  12. Joaquim Pinto - Groupe 2 says:

    Hello, Mike Wesch Teachers, we are a working group of the Master in Pedagogy of E-learning at the Open University – Portugal.

    For unity “Network Society” and through our teacher Antonio Teixeira, we learned of its existence and its excellent work around the Web influence on education and culture worldwide.

    After viewing some of your videos and website, where we put some comments, the result of teamwork, we find its concern to show the world the impacts included in the network society.

    Through videos simple, but highly significant, can show us the changes that occur in this mediated world, making us change social processes breaking the cultural past.

    We realized easily, from the message you want to address. Sure that their students, take delight in having a teacher with this dynamic entrepreneur.
    Sure that we will follow this path that we decided to go.
    We wish you continued excellent work she does.
    Yours sincerely

    TEAM 2

    Tercília Assis
    Carla Maria Elias
    Miguel Nuno Oliveira
    Joaquim Pinto
    Ana Torres

  13. Telma says:

    Dear Professor Michael Wesch,

    We are a group of students taking an online Master Course on E-Learning Pedagogy at Universidade Aberta, in Portugal. The teacher of Education and Society on the Web assigned us the following task: analyze and publish a post with a comment on your video.
    First of all, we would like to say that we found your presentation very appealing and full of pertinent content and the ideas presented on the notion and the search for the authentic self fascinated us!
    So here are our analyses as well as our post:

    Your 4.53 minute video shows the true sense and meaning of altruism in a very appealing way. In this video, students from Kansas State University organized themselves to receive the new coming students and to help the ones in need. A campaign is developed based on the selling of T-shirts with the symbolic word “proud”, from which a dollar reverts to help the students in need through scholarships that contribute to keep students in school. When we reach the end of the presentation we are also asked to contribute and in this sense to nominate a student in need and to make a donation. Besides this question, there is also the title of the song – “I need, want it”- that accompanies the video, which reinforces the message regarding the need to achieve what is suggested – helping others in need. At the end, when you see an online order requesting the assistance of any network user, it opens horizons and enables us to interact without boundaries, extending social and cultural sphere, creating effects in the lives of the people because they are led to a situation in which they acquire knowledge and to which the community intervention is sought.
    This is a way to learn to help and contribute to improve other people, with whom we can (or not) come to have contact, but we know that, somehow, we helped them … This idea is not new. However it is adapted to a new era of digital media, since the application is part of an online publication. It is thus a way of living and coexisting in the network society, where the spirit of mutual cooperation is always present and companionship too. The video shows us that it is possible to stop being individualistic and begin to be cooperative and collaborative. All the attitudes shown by students may be moved to the virtual world and the virtual society. Whether in the classroom environment or at university, we can get over all this virtual reality and do some e-help for students who sometimes are forgotten or ignored.

    Thank you very much for having published your work and for giving us the chance to comment on it.

    Marina, Paula and Telma.

  14. Ana Maria says:

    Dear Professor Michael Wesch

    We are a group of students of the Master of Elearning Pedagogy , at the Universidade Aberta, in Portugal, and we had the opportunity to watch the video “Students Helping Students” when we studied the changes caused in education by the new network society. We considered this video very interesting because it drew our attention to the ease with which young people can create a community and engage in something as significant as helping those in need.

    At a time when many people consider that, because of the isolation that the Internet causes, youth lost community values that have always existed, this video has proved the opposite. The Internet was used precisely to promote these values. This example clearly shows that YouTube can be more than a repository of entertainment videos, created and viewed only for personal satisfaction. It can be used also to appeal to the spirit of helpfulness and, given the capacity that Youtube has to influence the society, maybe this video will create replicas in other institutions. Maybe it will influence more students to help others. If this happens, then it will bring out the best of our network society.

    Congratulations for your initiative.

    Ana, Isabel, Emanuel and Manuel

  15. Hi, Prof. Wesch
    We are five students of a master degree in E-Learning Pedagogy, in Universidade Aberta, Portugal.
    We analyzed some of your videos and we focused on the following questions: the social function of education in the network society, the recovery of the community dimension of education and its relationship with the notion of self-training.

    We have watched and analyzed your video Students helping students , which we found to be an interesting way of recording and advertising a school project. This video shows the immense potential of YouTube as a tool to broadcast not only the project but the message within, making a statement for both the youth and the teachers. This is also a way to make everyone involved (the students as actors) heroes by their own right. We can see that YouTube is consciously used to generate a movement of social and civic consciousness, because the author and the students know that this media has a wider audience throughout the globe and it is very likely that young people will watch and share the videos. Based in these assumptions they may mobilize the youth globally to solve a socio-economic problem that affects them and which can be solved by themselves. By doing so they take on the initiative and the responsibility of solving this problem and present themselves as examples to follow.

    Fernando, Margarida, Helena, Denyze and Joaquim

  16. Hello Professor Mike Wesch,

    My name is Francisco Pereira. I am a student of Masters in Elearning Pedagogy of the Open University of Portugal and would like to express in this post some of my conclusions.

    This text is nothing more than a small analysis of the video “Students Helping Students”, viewed in this case by the eyes of a non Anglo-Saxon European, forcibly with another view of things, nevertheless, the main concern of this video, lays on cultural attitudes, common to human kind, never mind our big social and cultural differences.

    The world is different, new technologies, despite the costs still prohibitive for many people in the world are changing our interactions. Students take the technology into their classrooms using these technologies to move to the next class and often the world’s problems.

    In this video, the so human experience of sharing is explored. Create bonds of mutual support and integration, helping those most in need.

    The aim is to bring solidarity to the intricacies of academic life, in contrast to the sense of individualism and competition that the academic institution sometimes promotes. The major problem of modern societies is increasingly worrying lack of sharing and civic and political participation, the society promotes materialism and narcissism, and thus it is increasingly important to speak of help and solidarity, promote in universities and schools this healthy sense of concern for others.

    Hello Professor Mike Wesch,

    I am Hugo Medeiros and, in connection with my colleague, I would like to highlight some aspects that seemed relevant in this video.

    This video show us how the web can work (as an aggregator) for us (and not against us) this sense of justice, solidarity and group belonging allow us to do great things, a great inspiration and seeing this makes me wonder….
    Where is this spirit on our everyday life?? This video show us how astonishing we can be, it touch’s a “nerve”, a sense of dignity in helping someone in need.
    This sense of mutual aid is admirable, noble and fantastic.
    It reaches to our hearths and emotions, it makes us believe that the web, the network can work with us, for us and (with the right tools) can be used to be fantastic tool of intertwining and connection of life’s.
    In this video I see it clearly, the sense of belonging (of the students), the identity well structured (in the campus) of this organization that “allows” the under privileged students to get help.
    The web is a fantastic tool (that in this case is used to show us this project), which allows us to do things that we could not imagine at just a few years ago. It congregates a massive amount of people (and information) in a common purpose.
    This change in mentalities should (and can) happen in school benches, and this video it’s the max example of connection with purpose, and mind changing abilities.
    It can set an example of good will, purpose and moral standards, giving education, not just as academic approach, but also a social and behavioral component, with mutual aid.
    I took the liberty to collect and publish some of the comments on Youtube:
    THIS IS SOOOOO AWESOME!!!!!!!! YOU ALL ARE SOOOOOO INSPIRING! Keep up the amazing work! You are making a difference in so many lives! Smiles from New Zealand :)
    JacindaNZgirl

    this is so awesome…thanks for sharing and for spreading hope in the world.
    happeedaze1

    I don’t think that students get enough recognition. When something in our area or thousands of miles away happens,we hurry and raise money for ones in need. There’s always bad talk about college kids,hey! We do good as well.
    lovepeacenappiness23

    My husband and I are the ones you helped with textbooks and we just wanted to say thanks!
    JenniferPS23

  17. Rita Albuquerque says:

    Hi, Prof. Wesch,
    Allow us to introduce ourselves. We are students from the Masters’ in e-Learning Pedagogy from Portuguese Open University.
    We would like to congratulate you on the Students Helping Students video, produced by Kansas State University students in 2010 unveiling a project helping students move forward, even in the face of problems.
    Let us take the opportunity to share a last year case of students from Colegio Marista – Brasilia, a Brazilian high school. During 3 days, 1500 students participated on a Scavenger hunt with sport competition and philanthropic tasks. The winning team managed to raise approximately U.S. $ 3500.00 which was donated to a needy school that attend 80 children in the countryside. The delivery of the donation was registered by photos and shared by the students at a social networking site Facebook:
    —————————————————-
    Paulo Augusto Albuquerque Facebook page
    “ Today I went to donate the materials collected during Colegio Marista Scavenger hunt. The donation was made to a school in the countryside. I could realized how a $ 10 donation per student at Colegio Marista created such a joy among students, faculty and principal. I believe that if everyone was aware of the change that small gestures can generate, the world would be much better! Let’s think more about others and look up a little further than our navel.”
    You, Pedro Paulo Albuquerque, Peter Odeh, Raissa Palazzo and 81 other people enjoyed it very much.
    View all 23 comments
    —————————————————————————-
    Congratulations to you and all faculty that can engage young people in actions that help others and also encourage them to share through Web 2.0 tools, showing that we are still able to reach out to the next in need.
    Best regards
    Manuel J. Matos (Portugal) and Rita Albuquerque (Brasil)

  18. Filomena Pestana says:

    Dear Professor Michael Wesch,

    We are a group of students taking an online Master Course on E-Learning Pedagogy at Universidade Aberta, in Portugal. The teacher of Education and Society on the Web assigned us the following task: analyze and publish a post with a comment on your video.

    EVERYONE can do solidarity (without much money). YouTube, a Web 2.0 tool, can be used for this purpose.

    Instead of doing a big advertising campaign, we can use YouTube to more easily reach the target group of people who can help and support.

    First, who wants to help can do the research on-line on the issue and thus find the Youtube video.

    Second, those who know the video can send it to a more specific and selected public or expose it to a large extent in social networks, if we want.

    On the other hand, solidarity is not so passive any more. In the past, solidarity was to offer something. Now you can offer something (eg money) and find others that can help.

    The way to make solidarity, like other dimensions of human life, is changing. We are able to do more and different.

    The message of the video is important : the best way to ensure the future is by educating the young. Ensure education is to ensure the future.

    The video proves that the web is not to move away people, but bring them together. New forms of cooperation are emerging.
    In our opinion, this video articulates our individual responsibility and our collective responsibility.

    Alice, Filomena, Gonçalo and Miguel
    Portugal

  19. Paulo Ferreira - Equipa Omega says:

    Hi, Prof. Wesch.
    We’re posting a comment to your interesting video that was written in a group work by the students that are attending the Masters in Elearning Pedagogy of Open University in Portugal (www.univ-ab.pt).
    We saw your video “Students helping students” and we discussed a lot about it.
    This video aims to focus on the social dynamic of rapprochement between the people and particularly among young people. The “webs” that are established between different individuals, knowledge and respect for others, who is also the respect for you, does trigger a mesh of feelings and relationships that ultimately are the basis of collaborative learning facilitator. The underlying message of the film – the importance of solidarity, the exchange of affect, we are available to help others, makes us internalize the idea that everyone has a role to play, or in a more realistic dimension, either in the network interface as educational.

  20. Dear Prof. Wesch,

    More than a T-shirt, this video and this campaign shows us a group/net of people commited to the values of pure solidarity whose only reward it is the pride of doing the good for its own sake.

    In a society where competitivity rules, a society ruled by technologies and virtual relationships, it’s remarkable the fact that this helping net is made of youngsters, who value most friendship and a sharing spirit in close relationships with their fellow colleagues.

    Therefore we think that this video as well as the launching of this campaign through the net are an excellent way to raise funds but the true support are the people involved and in this particular case, of course, these young students. Without them this campaign wouldn’t be possible.

    Best Regards

    Carla Cardoso and Rui Páscoa, master’s degree students in E-Learning Pedagogy, Universidade Aberta, Portugal

  21. Nathalie Ferret says:

    Dear Professor,

    What a fantastic social network where youngest students can pull off, by themselves, isn’t it? For a lot of things, it seems even that they don’t need our old and traditional guidance. There’s much more we (teachers and educators in general) can learn with them, from their social and informal dynamic interactions, collaborative way of doing things and better adapting to nowadays (in this new century and within this network society) ideas, tools and resources than what they can learn with us. It’s important not to forget it. Only understanding this, we will be able to converge and share, among us all, knowledge and skills. The present video serves truly well this purpose.

    Best regards,

    Manuel Lousa, Nathalie Ferret and Pedro Vargas, master’s degree students on E-Learning Pedagogy at Universidade Aberta, Portugal.

  22. Laura Ramos says:

    Hello Professor Wesch,
    There are two concepts that come to mind while watching this video. One is community (due to the subject addressed in it) and the other is technology (due to the medium used to convey the message). Putting those two words together, we realize that nowadays there is a bidirectional relationship between them with a strength never before seen.
    Communities of people helping each other and working together towards a common goal have always existed, but technology has come to revive and give them a new scope. They no longer have to be restricted to their physical circle of influence: they can expand, be known and integrate anyone anywhere. They can find and be actively found by countless people. And that gives local associations like K-State Proud and their goal a global visibility just by having a presence in a potentially global medium. It has been rapidly and increasingly adding a new dimension to life (often named virtual), without which seems more and more difficult to part from.
    The medium is allowing us to create and maintain relationships based on common interests that would otherwise hardly exist. Hopefully there will be more relationships and awareness created from and towards issues like solidarity and active engagement rather than more negative aspects of human life. The potential is there. As in all things, it’s a matter of choice. And there lies one of the roles of Education.

    Laura Ramos
    Master’s student on E-learning Pedagogy, Universidade Aberta – Portugal

  23. Rute Antunes & Ricardo Carvalho (Omega team) says:

    It’s really amazing how students mobilized themselves to help those who were most in need. At this point, it begins to be necessary to look for a way to do it online without losing the excitement of human energy and the same efficiency. Unity is strength.

  24. Carolina V Caldeira says:

    Hy Professor Mike Wesch,

    In the video “Students Helping Students” it becomes clear that they are not only necessary changes in educational practices offered by educational institutions, but mainly a change in people’s behavior in coping with the changes that are being offered by digital media, or even by notion of forming network of people, with or without the help of the internet, but a collaborative network.

    The shared video on your page, it shows, above all, the importance of organizing people in a network, showing how small actions, gestures and expressions can help others. Moreover, we should note that all communication was done from a meeting held in person, without help global network of communication through computers.

    Best regards,

    Carolina Caldeira, Inês Araújo e Elisabete Santos (Capa Team-UAB-PT)

  25. Dear professor Wesch,
    We’re a group of Students of a master Degree on Elearning Pedagogy, from Open University, Portugal.
    In one of our courses, we were asked to make some statements about some of your videos. Therefore, here are our comments:
    This video shows the spirit of solidarity, collaboration and cooperation that exists among students of the University of Kansas, towards students with economic difficulties, revealing a set of values which are promoted within the academic community.
    If education is not only instruction, but also the transmission of values, this video demonstrates the role of technology, not as mere users, but knowledge builders and information sharers.
    On the other hand, it is also shown the importance given to education and the possibility that the network offers to the pursuit of a true democratization of education.

  26. Dear professor Wesch,
    We’re a group of Students of a master Degree on Elearning Pedagogy, from Open University, Portugal.
    In one of our courses, we were asked to make some statements about some of your videos. Therefore, here are our comments:
    This video shows the spirit of solidarity, collaboration and cooperation that exists among students of the University of Kansas, towards students with economic difficulties, revealing a set of values which are promoted within the academic community.
    If education is not only instruction, but also the transmission of values, this video demonstrates the role of technology, not as mere users, but knowledge builders and information sharers.
    On the other hand, it is also shown the importance given to education and the possibility that the network offers to the pursuit of a true democratization of education.

    Best regards from Teta Team

    Adelaide Dias, Alberto Cardoso, Cristina Neto

  27. Mara Lúcia Cristian, João Pedro Bourbon, João Henriques says:

    Professor Wesch,

    This video shows us that the K-State Proud is an excellent example of how, through the network, people can organize themselves, for the most different purposes. In the video “Students helping students”, young students help other young students in financial difficulty. How many young people could continue studying, being in financial difficulties, with the help of their peers? Many surely. People, as a consequence of the network society, and new habits imposed by it, tend to be more individualistic and self-centered. The K-State Proud shows that is possible, with the help of young people educated in this new kind of society, invert that tendency.

    Best regards

    Mara Lúcia Cristian
    João Pedro Bourbon
    João Henriques

    Master’s students on E-learning Pedagogy, Universidade Aberta – Portugal

  28. he lack of solidarity is not a feature of the network society, despite the claims of increased individualism and self-centric behaviours of the younger generation. This video shows how, taking advantage of the new technological tools and communication means of this age, young people are can congregate and effectively collaborate in causes they deem fair or of interest, even if they don’t expect any gains from that. The KSU Proud campaign is an example of a phenomena that occurs all over the internet, the crowd is collaborating to achieve common goals in an outstanding way, in a scale impossible to attain in the past. The word “crowd” itself became a suffix for collaboration projects, namely “crowdsourcing” and “crowdfunding”. The KSU proud can be placed among the last one, since students are anonymously contributing to help other students face their economic difficulties and keep them afloat in college. A congregation of efforts at this level and speed is unique to the new digital world, since the technology is at the core of this kind of campaigns to reach their increasingly vast audiences, and the answer is very seldom positive.

    João Henriques
    João Pedro Bourbon
    Mara Lúcia Cristan

  29. Dear professor Wesch,
    We’re a group of Students of a master Degree on Elearning Pedagogy, from Open University, Portugal.
    In one of our courses, we were asked to make some statements about some of your videos. Therefore, here are our comments:

    This video shows the spirit of solidarity, collaboration and cooperation that exists among students of the University of Kansas, towards students with economic difficulties, revealing a set of values which are promoted within the academic community.
    If education is not only instruction, but also the transmission of values, this video demonstrates the role of technology, not as mere users, but knowledge builders and information sharers.
    On the other hand, it is also shown the importance given to education and the possibility that the network offers to the pursuit of a true democratization of education.

    Teta Team: Adelaide Dias, Alberto Cardoso, Cristina Neto