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Facebook, ‘Fakebook,’ or ‘Hatebook’?: Mediated Persona Management in the Formation and Expression of Millennial Student Values

Presenter: Lee Krähenbühl

Lee_Krähenbühl-150x150.jpgProfessional Title:  Assistant Professor of Communication, Speech and Theatre

Institution: Mercy College of Ohio

Background Experience: Lee Krähenbühl has taught communication ethics and public communication for 25 years, and has been involved in teaching and planning first year experience programs for the past two decades. He holds a master’s degree in theology and the arts from Pacific School of Religion and a doctoral degree in speech: theatre from the University of Oregon.


Jennifer_Discher-150x150.jpgPresenter:  Jennifer Discher

Professional Title:  Director of Mission and Values Integration

Institution: Mercy Health Partners

Background Experience: Jennifer Discher holds a PhD in higher education administration from the University of Toledo, a master’s degree in divinity from the University of Notre Dame, and a master’s degree in educational leadership from Wayne State University. She has taught classes in social analysis of education, homelessness, and re-investing spirituality in our networks. She has also been involved in mentoring, community/migrant outreach, and multiple social justice projects. Discher’s research interests include bioethics, service learning, civic engagement, the education and training of mission-infused employees, and Catholic health care.


Carol_Schwartz-150x150.jpgPresenter: Carol Schwartz

Professional Title:  Associate Chair for Undergraduate Teacher Education and Assistant Professor Focusing on Assessment

Institution: Lourdes University

Background Experience: Carol Schwartz, PhD previously worked in various capacities, promoting the creation of authentic, active learning experiences and quality instruction supported by effective technology integration. In addition to Schwartz’s work in teacher education, her research interests include teaching practices of higher education faculty, particularly adjuncts/contingent faculty.


Millennial undergraduates use social media to manage their public and interpersonal personae. Students do this with a notable mix of enthusiasm for the power of social media and ambivalence about unintended consequences of their use. The session uses presentation and group discussion to examine the ways in which student values are both expressed and formed by the use of social media, illustrated by comments from two recent cohorts of Millennial students.

Important Question Explored: “In what way are social media expressive and formative of student values, and what should the response of educators be?”

Session Experience:  Millennial students use social media like Facebook to multitask in their communication (Jacobsen & Forste, 2011), but also express ambivalence that a social medium such as Facebook can become “Fakebook,” distorting the self, or “Hatebook,” a vehicle for interpersonal difficulty. Three higher education professionals—two “Boomers” and one “Gen-Xer”—will form the panel of this presentation. All three were trained in pre-internet academia, but teach in today’s web-immersed classroom. The session will broaden to a group discussion of the ways in which student values are both expressed and formed by the use of social media, illustrated by comments from two recent cohorts of Millennial students on their potential and abuse.

Extension of Session Experience: After the session, participants will have discussed their millennial students’ use of social media, and explored the implications of those media for student values.


Jacobsen, W. C., & Forste, R. (2011). The wired generation: Academic and social outcomes of electronic media use among university students. Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking, 14, 275–280.