Communications Toolkit for Academics

Calendar

Many journalists and media outlets publish stories around major national holidays, remembrances, celebrations and pop-culture dates. Below is a list of current events or special dates about which your research or expertise could relate. These dates and question prompts can be used to help you generate ideas for blog posts, social media posts, op-eds, articles for The Conversation, or to be quoted in the media. Please contact Jessi Adler at jessi.adler@cabs.msu.edu if you are interested in writing for The Conversation or being listed as an expert for one of the below topics. 

Topic Ideas

MARCH

  • March 9 - 100 Best Companies to Work For
  • March 10 - Stress in America survey released
  • March 12-18. Sunshine Week 
  • March 22 - World Water Day

APRIL

National Financial Literacy Month. Presidential Proclamation calls on Americans to observe the month with programs and activities to improve their understanding of financial principles and practices.  Why do so many Americans have a hard time with their finances? Should high schools teach basic financial literacy in addition to algebra and calculus?

April 4 - Mayors Day of Recognition for National Service. Mayors Day of Recognition for National Service, to highlight the impact of AmeriCorps and Senior Corps and thank individuals who serve. The President’s budget is calling for the elimination of the Corporation for National and Community Service, the parent of AmeriCorps. How would this elimination impact communities that are served by AmeriCorps and SeniorCorps?

April 6 - 100th anniversary of America entering WWI. The U.S. officially entered World War I on this day in 1917. President Wilson wanted WWI to be “a war to end all wars,” but it did not work out that way. Is it possible for a war to pave the way for peace? What has to happen after a war ends to prevent conflict from erupting again in the future? What can we learn from the events immediately following WWI to better repair international relations after war?

April 15-23. National Park Week. Celebrating the National Parks and inviting Americans to visit and participate in conservation. The National Parks showcase exceptionally diverse landscapes and geographical features across the United States. What can these teach us about the various climates and ecological diversity in the U.S.?

April 21 - TIME 100 list announced. Announcement of the world's 100 most powerful and influential people, as chosen by the magazine's editors. Who should make the list this year? What factors make someone influential? What is the status of previous winners – are they still considered powerful and influential?

April 22 - Earth Day. With a potential war on science happening, what can scientists and science supporters do to ensure our earth remains a viable place to live for years to come? What environmentally-friendly actions can individuals take to do their part?

April 25 - World Malaria Day. Commemorating global efforts to control malaria. More than 3.3 billion people globally are at risk for malaria, yet most Americans aren’t fully aware of its devastation. Why should they care? What can researchers do to highlight awareness?

April 27 - 2017 World Press Freedom Index Published. The Annual World Press Freedom Index will be released today by the organization Reporters Without Borders. The index shows the degree of freedom that journalists have in 180 different countries. Last year, Finland was ranked first; the U.S. was ranked 41. The Trump administration has had very public confrontations with the press so far. How will the Trump presidency impact journalistic freedom rankings for the U.S.? What can media outlets do to protect themselves from retaliation for negative press? 

April 29 - The White House Correspondents' Association dinner. A celebration of the First Amendment and the mission of advocating for journalists' ability to ask questions of government officials, push for transparency from the presidency, and help Americans hold the powerful to account. Has the new presidential administration infringed on the First Amendment by barring journalists from press briefing? What can/should journalists do in these situations? 

Alt
Sign up for REACH Newsletter