Tweeting @ Taylor
by Jambara Qualah
It’s not every day you hear of students, or even MSUM’s president, tweeting for a celebrity visit, not to mention the celebrity being Taylor Swift.
Swift’s concert at the Fargodome was set for the first day of MSUM’s homecoming week. The homecoming committee said they learned of it a few weeks prior and thought to invite her to homecoming.
They started a social media campaign to bring Swift to either the homecoming block party or the French toast feed.
“It was something to get the students to rally behind, like, ‘Let’s get Taylor Swift at homecoming, it will be so cool!” said Louis Zurn, photographer for the homecoming committee. “The idea was to have an everlasting memory and different from the normal.”
Although senior Jamaal Abegaz didn’t think Swift would come, due to her demanding touring schedule, he believed her presence would’ve made an impact on the campus.
“It would be great for notoriety and getting the MSUM brand out there,” Abegaz said. “I suppose it could have gotten us some new students.”
More than a hundred tweets with the hashtag #WeAreSWIFTDragons flooded Twitter with the hope of drawing Swift’s attention.
“It’s a good way to get in contact with celebrities in ways you might not have,” Zurn said. “It’s another good way to get people’s attention because it doesn’t require a lot of effort and planning.”
The homecoming committee reported that more than 500 people, ranging from campus committees to offices tweeted, including President Anne Blackhurst.
“I expected [Blackhurst] to because she’s really cool. I love her!” said homecoming coordinator Daniela Kossowski.
Blackhurst is known to be active on social media, something she did in the past and continues to do as the university’s president.
“I know she supports our school pride. Her social media presence is one of the reasons why many students like her,” Zurn said. “She’s very active on social media, and the students really appreciate that from an administrator who’s much more on their level. Anne is really good about that.”
Swift never made it to MSUM, nor did she receive those tweets, but she was nearby, performing at the Fargodome. Kossowski had hopes, but Zurn and Abegaz knew from the get-go it wasn’t going to happen.The committee said they’re proud they thought of the idea, but next time they’ll get started earlier to build more hype.