|As 2018 comes to a close, I wanted to say thank you for an incredible year. I'm proud of all that we accomplished this year as a community. It was a big one for media literacy.
My top three sources of pride from the last year? (Besides my kids and meeting my "steps" goal for the year, of course:)
1) MEMBERSHIP - This year NAMLE's membership grew by
1,000 individuals. We have over 5,100 members and that grows on a weekly basis. We have members in every state in the U.S. and we also continue to grow our international network. This growth inspires me to keep working every day to strengthen our network. I want all of our 5,000+ members to know that NAMLE is here to support you, introduce you to resources and projects, and provide a network of passionate media literacy educators who are stronger as a community than we could ever be on our own.
2) REGIONAL EVENTS - For as long as I have been Executive Director, we have been talking about how we want to make sure we organized regional events on the years we don't have a national conference. In 2018, we finally made this a reality. In April, we partnered with
Boise State University
to host an event on their campus. In September, we joined with
University on an event at their school. Both events explored the topic of
Media Literacy and Civic Engagement
. I absolutely loved these events because they brought together both our local and national partners and started important discussions in local communities.
3) MEDIA LITERACY WEEK - This year, we had
250 national partners
for U.S. Media Literacy Week. We hosted our first virtual media literacy fair, partnered with truTV to bring great media content to schools and universities, organized another successful event at Reuters in NYC, and supported all our partners on events and activities around the country and beyond. It continues to be my favorite week of the year!
While those are my "top 3", there is so much more that happened at NAMLE in 2018 that could never have happened without our incredible volunteer community.
team has worked hard to run our call for proposals process, solidify conference locations, and begin the herculean task of running our conference.
Councils run our social media accounts, edit our newsletters, act as webmasters for our various websites, coordinate our student voice blog page (
new one out now
), and so much more.
And, of course, none of this would be possible without
NAMLE's Board of Directors
who work with me every day to make sure the work we do is successful and sustainable.
Looking ahead to 2019, there is a lot on the horizon.
We will continue to work with the Poynter Institute, Stanford
Education Group (SHEG), and the Local Media Association on the
project. The project features a research-based curriculum created by SHEG and a teen-led fact-checking initiative led by Poynter.
We will be assessing all the data created from our State of Media Literacy survey for our first State of Media Literacy in the U.S. Report, which will be presented in Washington, D.C. at our National Conference in June.
We are partnering with Loyola University in Baltimore on a March 1 Regional Event exploring Media Literacy and Social Justice.
We are co-chairing the 2019 Research Symposium at the Broadcast Education Association Conference entitled Media Literacy: What NOW? The Research Symposium will take place in Las Vegas during the BEA2019 conference on April 7.
On June 26-28, we will be hosting our biennial National Conference in Washington, D.C. Elevating Conversation, Unifying Voices is designed to provide a platform for including voices from diverse disciplines as we explore the future of media literacy in a rapidly shifting media landscape. The program plan is the most innovative we have ever created and we received more proposals than ever before. I am super excited with what our conference team is putting together.
And, let us not forget, 2019 brings us the
5th Annual Media LIteracy Week! I am currently working with our partners around the world to confirm dates. (Spoiler alert: we might be moving it to October. Stay tuned for more information by February 1 so planning can begin!)
I am a bit tired just thinking about all we will accomplish during the coming year. I am glad I have you all on my team to make it happen!
Here's to a wonderful 2019!
Michelle Ciulla Lipkin, Executive Director