If you go back to one of my first blog pieces, “How I Use Twitter,” you’ll see that I began actively using Twitter to participate in a White House Twitterchat for the 2012 State of the Union. Over 2,000 Tweets later, I’m still going strong and have enjoyed all of the connections I’ve made along the way. I’d like to think that I’ve shared some interesting articles and reports in the past two years. On top of that, I’ve tried to use Twitter to engage with my elected representatives and other political figures. I’ve even developed a unit on politics and social media for the government class I teach. Needless to say, I was really excited then when I opened up my email from the White House telling me I’ve been invited to the 2014 State of the Union Social.
The Social is an opportunity for White House “social media followers to join in-person events, engage with administration officials, and share their experience with their friends.” It’s going to be a quick trip- I fly out Monday and come back Wednesday- but it should be very rewarding. I’m looking forward to live-tweeting the speech from the White House and participating in the post-speech panels with administration officials. I think this will be a great way to show my students that social media can be an effective tool and that it can lead to some really awesome opportunities. Of course, I will also try to see the sights, especially the White House and Capitol, and hopefully the EU Delegation to the US.
If I’m being completely honest, I have to admit that I am a bit nervous about live-tweeting from the White House. I feel like my Tweets during the SOTU will be under closer scrutiny than they usually are and that people will be judging me more so than they might already. I’m honored to have been chosen to attend this prestigious event, and I don’t want the White House to feel like they made a poor choice in having me there. All of my hard work to use Twitter as a professional tool has led to this moment, and I don’t want to waste this opportunity.
I look forward to writing about my trip and tweeting, and I hope that it will lead to some great discussions and even more opportunities to put my passion for history, politics, and social media to use.
Thanks for reading.