Blogging for the future: Students attend national conference

Social media has grown from a way to virtually connect with friends and family into a methodical way of making a name for one’s self or landing a dream job.

With the rise in social media usage,  many could feel a pressure to get their own digital footprint out there, but have no idea how to transmit their personalities through to the virtual public.

One way of creating one’s own niche footprint is through blogging.

“I think blogging is more popular now because the Internet is popular. There is so much content on the web that people don’t know where to start, but with their own interests. There are blogs about cooking, reading, crafting and basically anything ever,” Allison Simenkiewicz, senior intergrative media major, said.

“People look for other people with their own interests and blogging has almost become another form of social media. The blog is you, essentially; your interests, your writing, your self is being put into this blog. Everyone wants to find and connect with people who think the same as they do, and blogging is just another way to do that,” Simenkiewicz added.

Simenkiewicz recently attended NEPA BlogCon, a conference hosted by East Stroudsburg University. The conference was about the importance, advantage and enhancement of blogs and social media. The conference reportedly had people attend from across the country along with students from various colleges up and down the East Coast.

“There’s over 18 million blogs out there according to the one speaker,” Simenkiewicz said.

With so many blogs already in existence, there is one question that comes to mind: “What is the point of creating my own blog?”

The answer is to better market yourself.

“Blogs are great for marketing yourself because it is essentially you, in digital form. You have to take the time to write content with your voice and you really put yourself out there by doing that,” Simenkiewicz said. “If you upload really good content about your niche subject, then people will take notice and your ‘market value’ will surely increase. I think that blogging is a way to get your voice out there.”

At NEPA BlogCon 2015, keynote speaker, Ashley Ambirge, CEO of the creative agency House of Moxie, Inc., spoke about her ‘Middle Finger Project’ blog and her social media career.

Adam Lubas, senior communication studies major who also attended the conference, said, “She was inspirational in the way she has grown and changed over life. Not only was her speaking strong, but her presence and overall attitude towards life was very interesting. It showed that if you do have social media as your career you could make a profit from it.”

Lubas also mentioned that Ambirge was particularly inspiring to him because she completed her undergraduate degree in 2006 from the Department of Communication Studies at Wilkes University, focusing in public relations.

“It was beneficial to me to realize that I could have her success one day,” Lubas added.

Despite the route a student may take after college, the conference served as an opportunity to teach those in attendance the benefits social and professional blogs could have on expanding their personal and professional lives.