2022 Undergraduate Research Showcase


How Does Social Media Affect Student Involvement in Post-Secondary Peer Mentorship Programs for Students with Disabilities?

Document Type

Student Presentation

Presentation Date


Faculty Sponsor

Dr. Jeremy Ford


In the past decade, social media has grown to become a major part of today’s society. Attracting a large range of people, social media platforms allow for individuals to connect with those around them along with those far away. One of the biggest places where social media plays a major role is within a university setting. Many college students have social media accounts that allow them to stay updated with events happening in their area and connect with a diverse range of people within their college community. But how heavily does social media play a role in student involvement on a college campus? In order to answer this question, researchers Katie Killmer and Erin Milliken created an Instagram for an up and coming student organization on campus in order to increase student involvement. The PEERS program is a two year post-secondary education program on the campus of Boise State University for college students with disabilities seeking to earn the Community and Career Readiness Studies (CCRS) certificate. Creating an Instagram account would allow the PEERS Program to reach a larger audience and potentially increase the number of allies who join the program to support the students within the PEERS Program. After managing the Instagram account over the span of four months, the account gained eighty-five followers, many new allies to the program, and invited six new students to join the PEERS Program for the 2022-2023 academic school year. Beyond this, students from all different areas of Boise State University have become allies to the program. These students include student athletes, on campus student leaders, students within the College of Education, etc. Peer mentorship programs play a major role in increasing student retention, student satisfaction with their university, and overall it increases a sense of belonging on campus. Social media can play an essential role in promoting such programs that can allow students with disabilities to feel a place on their university’s campus all while building a community with a group of diverse individuals who are there to support them in their educational journey.

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