Associate Professor Yonty Friesem Presents Keynote Address on Media Literacy in Brussels

Yonty Friesem, PhD, shares their experiences with the Illinois Media Literacy Coalition and Columbia’s Media for Social Impact program.

On Feb. 29, Yonty Friesem, PhD, an associate professor in Communication at Columbia College Chicago, was one of the keynote speakers at the Media Literacy Matters conference in Brussels. Friesem presented the work they have done in Illinois as part of the Illinois Media Literacy Coalition (IMLC) to support the state legislation that advances media literacy in public high schools. As part of Friesem’s work as the graduate director of the MA in Media for Social Impact and executive director of the Media Education Lab, they support students and educators across Illinois and internationally to learn best practices of media literacy. 

The presentation, entitled “Advancing Media Education Across the State,” was part of a panel showcasing international success model to implement media literacy that inspires the 400 attendees coming from 42 countries. Friesem provided an overview of the many initiatives that the college and the ILMLC are making to support the information needs of students and community members.

During the conference, many participants expressed interest in the model in which students and faculty at Columbia College Chicago engage with the local communities to support enhancing media literacy in the age of misinformation and disinformation.

The conference was organized by Mediawijs, the Flemish Knowledge Centre for Digital and Media Literacy, with support of the Belgian presidency of the Council of the European Union 2024 as part of the European Digital and Media Literacy Conference week.