Technology and Education: Liberty University Gets A Digital Detox Through Center For Digital Wellness [VIDEO]By Anne Collins, UniversityHerald Reporter
The rapid growth of technology has transformed many aspects of day-to-day life, including social behavior. Liberty University launched the nation's first Center for Digital Wellness to promote a healthy use and biblical view of technology.
Dr. Sylvia Hart Frejd, founder of the Center for Digital Wellness, housed in a Wi-Fi-proof room at Liberty University. It is part of her mission to help students balance tech time and face time, to train their eye on fellow humans instead of smart screens.
Dr. Frejd promotes 24-hour digital fasting and counseling for students and how to thrive in real life, not just in their digital lives. She said students would first need to overcome the fear of a real conversation.
She said first students should put down their phones and make face-to-face connection with other students. She got 20 students from Liberty's theater arts department to stage a flash mob in the dining hall. They were holding their cellphones, frozen for three minutes, before shouting "Look up!" which happens to be the name of Dr. Frejd's campaign.
Common Sense Media conducted a suvey last year of 620 teenagers and found that 78 percent checked their devices at least hourly and 72 percent felt the need to respond to text messages and other notification immediately.
Dr. Frejd is the co-author of "The Digital Invasion: How Technology Is Shaping You and Your Relationships." Her "Look Up!" campaign posters and pop-up tents can be seen all around campus. She has been known to reprimand students who shuffle along in their digital bubble when she passes in the hallways.
She recalled when she was walking down the hall that a students was really embarrassed and said 'It's the digital wellness lady!' She also saw a guy looking down at his phone while walking into a woman's bathroom. She called his attention and said "Look up!" but it was too late, The New York Times reported.