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Should Your Chapter Activities Be in the News?

Posted By Bradley Cannon, Psi Chi Central Office, Tuesday, May 28, 2019
Updated: Tuesday, May 28, 2019

Last fall, I shared 10 or so news stories from various publications that feature Psi Chi chapters making a difference in their communities. Also, I briefly discussed some of the many media platforms where you should consider spreading the news about your chapter.

But what exactly is news, and how do you know which of your chapter’s activities you should share with others? Here is a quick tip: Choose events that meet some of these seven qualities, which journalists look for in order to determine whether a story is newsworthy.

  • Timeliness—Did the story/event occur recently, or will it occur soon?
  • Proximity—Is the story/event local and relevant to the people who will be receiving it?
  • Impact or Consequence—Will the story/event change people’s lives?
  • Novelty or Rarity—Is the story/event unusual or unexpected?
  • Conflict—Will the story/event stir up further discussion or debate?
  • Human Interest—Does the story/event provide a unique glimpse into someone’s life?
  • Prominence—Are the people in your story/event easily recognized or famous to your audience?

One story/event will probably only feature three or four of the qualities above. However, the more qualities that it does include, the more likely it will be picked up by the local media. For example, if your chapter will soon (Timeliness) be traveling to the local grocery story (Proximity) to raise funds for autism awareness (Impact) by selling cookies decorated like human brains (Novelty), then you’ve absolutely got a story worth sharing!

Even better, consider ways to fulfill the other newsworthiness qualities during your chapter’s upcoming events. For example, for the autism awareness event introduced in the previous paragraph, you could invite a popular local band member (Prominence) to join your event, play a few songs, and share about her experiences (Human Interest) with people who treated her differently due to her autism (Conflict). As you can see, through only a little extra effort, you now have a highly newsworthy story that many local media outlets will be ecstatic to feature!

And now, here are some of the latest Psi Chi chapters and members in the news. Please note that each of these stories takes place during the fall 2018 semester. I will share spring 2019 articles later this year, so be sure to continue promoting your chapter in the media and perhaps your article will be featured here in the blog as well.

Place Your Bets! How to Host a Chapter Trivia Game Show
December 18, 2018—Psi-Chi-ology Lab

Psychology Alumna Studies European Attitudes Toward Immigration Through Psi Chi Grant
November 16, 2018—UMSL Daily

Catawba Psi Chi Inducts New Members
November 8, 2018—Salisbury Post

It’s About Time to Meet Our Leaders
November 7, 2018—The Banner

Pepperdine Psi Chi Works to Increase On-Campus Presence
October 31, 2018—Pepperdine University Graphic

Top Recruiting Chapters of Fiscal Year 2018
October 29, 2018—Psi-Chi-ology Lab

A Conversation About Student Mental Health and Wellness

October 29, 2018—Net News Ledger

Lighthouse, Psi Chi Offer Depression Screening, Information
October 25, 2018—The Collegian

Purdue Northwest Grad Finds Direction and Excels

October 4, 2018—Chicago Tribune

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Tags:  Chapter Life  Psi Chi Related 

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