For students at IUP, social media has become not just a fun activity, but a useful and necessary tool.
From instant communication, a living resume and, of course, networking, social media is something which students constantly use.
Despite the many functions that social media has, there are many students that simply use social media to communicate with others.
“I use Discord on PC and mobile,” Michael Cummings (sophomore, sociology) said. “I use them because I have a bigger social presence there than on Snapchat or Facebook. Plus, with the ability to connect to voice chats, I never have to get seven different apps.”
There are others who use social media for both entertainment and communication.
“I use YouTube and Twitch on my phone and laptop. Twitch so I can watch my brother stream, and YouTube because I like to watch my favorite YouTubers,” Ali Appleman (sophomore, communications media) said. “I use Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat and TikTok on my phone. Instagram and Snapchat [are used] to stay in touch with my family. I also use Twitter and TikTok for entertainment.”
For a lot of students, social media is a way to express themselves, from showing off their latest dance routine, showcasing a painting they have spent the last semester on or just getting the word out to others about the different organizations they are in.
The most popular and widely used social media on campus that were repeatedly mentioned were that of Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and Snapchat. Many liked those platforms in particular due to their intuitive design and easy use.
They represent a simple and free way to instantly communicate to anyone.
“I use Instagram and Snapchat most frequently; all other social media platforms I’ve drifted away from over the years,“ Isabella Benson (senior, public relations). “I mostly use Instagram and Snapchat on my phone to stay in contact with people.”
Typing the three letters “IUP” into the search bar of any major social media will immediately bombard one with a large amount of IUP-affiliated organizations. From in-house pages like @iupdining, a page dedicated to keeping up to date on all North Dining related needs, to department-based ones like @iupcommmedia, which has throwback posts, student spotlights and news updates based around the communications media major, there are various social medias dedicated to IUP organizations.
The page @iupfootball is just what it sounds like; a page showing the football schedule, showcasing players and game highlights. Of course, there are numerous Greek life and club-based ones such as @iupques and @iupsfa.
Students at IUP have been using social media since before there was social media, and it is not going anywhere any time soon. It is a fixture now in our everyday life, and it has the ability when used properly to help students.
“I use Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat and Instagram,” Kaitlyn Marie (sophomore, communications media) said. “I use them because it is a way to stay in touch with friends and family I don’t normally see.”
So, whether it is for entertainment or for communication, social media is a tool that is widely used by students to stay in touch and have fun.