Social media certificate student spotlight: Michael Smoley

Josh Nihiser
March 4, 2021

For this week’s social media certificate student spotlight, we’re showcasing Michael Smoley, a senior in strategic communication with a specialization in marketing. Read below to find out how Michael is using his social media certificate to lead accounts for our own Bobcat Esports Club. 

Why did you decide to pursue the Scripps College of Communication social media certificate?

I originally decided to pursue the certificate because social media has always been a fascinating aspect of everyday life for me. My interest in social media comes from my love and interest in community interaction and engagement, which are two of the most basic building blocks of social media.

What positions do you hold in media and what do you do for said positions?

Right now, I am a social media manager for Bobcat Esports, Ohio University's esport club. In addition to running the Twitter account, I also create social media strategies, content calendars, and posts to promote community interaction.

The certificate has been useful for my job and internships. One of my favorite classes that I've taken for the certificate, Strategic Social Media, was extremely helpful in teaching me about the basics of things like content calendars, strategy, and multimedia content creation. Another certificate class that I'm currently taking, Social Media Analytics, has been useful in teaching me about different analytical software and how to decipher data, which has very real-world implications and uses.

Did you have any social media-related internships? Tell us more!

My first social media internship was actually provided by the social media certificate program. Throughout this internship, I worked with a team of other Social Media Certificate students to improve the Ohio University School of Media Arts and Studies’ social media accounts. Although it was unfortunately cut short by the pandemic, I learned a lot of valuable lessons from the internship, such as content creation and graphic design.

What are your professional goals?

One day I would love to have some kind of communications or public relations role for a political campaign. I would also enjoy working on social media or public relations for a gaming company.

You mentioned you wanted to potentially work for a politician. Who would this politician ideally be? 

I would love to someday work for a politician like Bernie Sanders or Andrew Yang. Ideally, I would like to work for a politician that is not afraid to "tell it how it is" on their social media channels and use their platforms for activism and change!

How do you think the OHIO social media certificate will help you?

The social media certificate has given me a lot of insight into how social media works in a way that not many other people would think about. Not only is it a great thing to put on a resume, but it's also a great introduction to the field.

Since this social media certificate is such a new program here at OU, it's a great experience to go through in order to improve the experience for the next generation of social media scholars. There is a very close sense of camaraderie with other certificate students, as well as an awesome and engaged group of alumni to network with upon graduation. While this also applies to a lot of OU's other certificate programs, it has been really cool to see it apply to such a new program. 

Some specific skills that I've learned through the program include improving my graphic design skills, how to form a social media strategy and content calendars, what kinds of content engage audiences, and how to use various social media software such as Hootsuite, analytical software, and more!

Here at the Ohio University School of Media Arts and Studies, we’re extremely passionate about putting our students front and center. We want to showcase the excellent work that they’ve created and the amazing places in our field that they’ve been. Make sure to check back to this page frequently to see even more Student Spotlights! You can to learn more about the Scripps College of Communication social media certificate on our webpage.