Meet a Tiger: Joe Mazer
This Tiger is an educator and an administrator who strongly connects with the concept of family–at home or in the workplace. He is an advocate for his students. In fact, his dedication to them is so strong that he and his wife actually lived among them as part of the university’s successful Faculty-in-Residence program.
You’ll find him teaching a class, analyzing Social Media conversations, flying airplanes and space shuttles (not real ones), or watching Mickey Mouse Clubhouse with his two adorable children.
Meet Joe Mazer.
Title: Associate professor and associate chair, department of communication; director, Social Media Listening Center
Years at Clemson: This is my 7th academic year.
What I do at Clemson: I teach undergraduate and graduate courses in the department of communication where I also serve as associate department chair. I oversee course scheduling, registration, and enrollment management, lead the department’s curriculum and assessment work, and work closely with the recruitment and hiring of new faculty members. I also serve as director of Clemson’s Social Media Listening Center (SMLC). Founded in 2012, the SMLC is an interdisciplinary, cutting-edge laboratory that seeks to monitor, measure, and engage in social media conversations from across the web. Using some of the most powerful social analytics software available, the SMLC provides learning, teaching, research, and partnership opportunities to students, faculty, collaborative research partners, and external clients. Salesforce Radian6 provides the platform to listen, measure, and engage in conversations across the Web by capturing more than 650 million sources of social media conversations, including Facebook, Twitter, blogs, online communities, and mainstream news outlets. The Radian6 summary dashboard provides a graphic display of social media content to convey sentiment, share of voice, trend information, geo-location data and much more. I have been fortunate to collaborate with colleagues from across the university and with external partners to explore issues related to cyberbullying, interconnected infrastructure systems, and women and diversity in STEM. Other projects are ongoing that will continue to contribute to Clemson’s place as a national leader in social media listening.
The SMLC is regularly featured in local news media, so the 2016 presidential election season was a busy time. Undergraduate communication students in my senior capstone seminar partnered with WYFF 4, the top-rated television station in South Carolina’s largest media market, to analyze social media conversations playing out online in the months leading up to Election Day. Students worked with WYFF 4 to file featured weekly reports during the NBC affiliate’s nightly broadcasts. It was a wonderful learning opportunity for students and a fantastic process for me to observe as a teacher. Students would receive the week’s topic on Friday, spend the weekend conducting research, and then report their findings to the class during our regular class meeting time. Together, we would compile the most interesting and important pieces of social media data relevant to the week’s topic. Two students from the class would volunteer to meet with the WYFF crew on Wednesday morning to report their findings and be interviewed for the news story. When the class got back together that same day, we would watch their work on air during WYFF News 4’s 4 p.m. broadcast. Students saw the fruits of their labor that same day and I was honored to be part of the experience. The class experience culminated on Election Day when WYFF News 4 was live from the SMLC throughout the afternoon and into the night. Students tracked the election results in real time and were interviewed live during WYFF’s election night broadcasts. Together, we watched the results of the presidential election unfold. It is an experience that I will never forget.
What I love about Clemson: I love the family environment and the students. My wife, Chrissy, and I recently completed a two-year term as Faculty in Residence in the Shoebox community for first-year students. In July 2014, we sold our home and moved on campus to connect more deeply with students. It was a fantastic immersive experience and a wonderful way to be engaged with areas of the university that we don’t typically touch as faculty members.
Accomplishment I’m most proud of: Personally, being a dad. My wife, Chrissy, and I are the proud parents of a three-year-old daughter, Claire, and an 18-month-old son, Owen. They keep us busy. Professionally, it has been very rewarding to help other universities build social media labs and centers over the years. Many of the nation’s top universities look to Clemson for advice and counsel and I am honored to play a role in that.
Last thing I watched on TV: Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood or Mickey Mouse Clubhouse. Claire and Owen love those shows.
Where I see myself in five years: Here at Clemson, but hopefully watching something on TV other than Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood or Mickey Mouse Clubhouse.
Guilty pleasure: Flying the airplane and space shuttle at the Children’s Museum of the Upstate in Greenville. Pedicures.
One thing most people don’t know about me: My interest in communication began when I was a high school freshman as a member of my high school’s television station, which was the first high school television station in the country. George McFee, a longtime art teacher in the school district, founded the station in 1968. He was an outstanding artist, teacher and mentor. He had an incredible influence on my life but, sadly, he passed away during my junior year of high school. I owe much of my professional success to him.
Want to nominate a colleague to be featured in Meet a Tiger? Contact Jackie Todd at firstname.lastname@example.org.