Becca Coopwood ’27 serves as a student ambassador for The Social Institute, an organization that works to empower students to use social media and technology in a positive way. In her role, she helps produce blog posts from the perspective of students.
Becca Coopwood ’27 wants to make sure student voices are heard, and as a student ambassador for The Social Institute
, she has a platform to do just that. “Middle school students and students overall can feel silenced. To be a voice and give perspective is important,” Becca said.
The Social Institute, which produces #WinatSocial, aims to empower students to navigate social media and technology in a positive way. Becca is a student leader of the Content and Writing Committee alongside a high school senior. It's a prestigious role for an eighth grader, and she gets to collaborate with student ambassadors across the country to produce blog posts about social media, current events, and additional topics that are relevant to students.
Hutchison has been implementing #WinatSocial, an innovative curriculum, for a year in all middle and upper school grades. The program focuses on life skills for today and equips students to make high-character decisions based on seven standards
, such as “Use Your Mic for Good,” “Protect Your Privacy Like You’re Famous,” and “Strike a Balance.” Hutchison highlights one of these standards each month in grade-appropriate lessons and offers a parent toolkit for discussions to continue at home.
“The whole goal is starting young and teaching kids to use social media for good,” said Katie Sentilles, Hutchison’s middle school counselor.
When Sentilles asked her to apply to become a student ambassador, Becca said she felt honored. She loves writing, researching, and interviewing, which she gets to do in her role. She is currently working on a piece about what students want parents to know and is gathering information about how social media and other factors impact students as they learn. One of her goals is to amplify the voices of students around her and use her point of view to help people get a better understanding of what students want and need.
Social media and technology use can be a difficult topic for students to talk about, and they don’t often want to discuss it, Becca said. But through #WinatSocial and her work with The Social Institute, she has learned to analyze what she sees on social media and think more critically about her interactions. She is aware of her digital footprint and how social media use can have a long-lasting impact on herself and others. As she continues with The Social Institute, she hopes she will be able to reach more people and spark conversations.
“In the future, not only do I see myself connecting with students at other schools, but also using these resources at my own school and motivating students to learn. I want them to get a deeper understanding so they can take this with them past high school,” Becca said.
On a more personal level, Becca said she hopes to bring positive energy to her class and be the best version of herself. She has attended Hutchison since early childhood. She is a member of the Spanish Club and the Quiz Bowl team, and she has participated in Model UN for the past two years. Becca is seen as a leader and someone whom her peers look up to, Sentilles said. She also recently joined the Bee-longing Committee, a new committee in Hutchison’s middle school that aims to promote inclusion.
“She really desires to make a difference,” said Tonya Faulkner, Hutchison's Director of Student Inclusion and Belonging.
You can read more about what Hutchison hopes to teach through #WinatSocial by reading a guest column that Sentilles wrote for Daily Memphian.