Blogging helps students develop skills


(Photo: Courtesy of Queen of All You See)

by Baillee Furst, Special to The Simpsonian

There are more than 152 million blogs out in the world right now, with news ones being created every half a second, reported WordPress, a website creator and manager.

With such a large number of blogs out there, it’s not a surprise that there are Simpson students with ones of their own.

Junior Brooklyn Hunter is an example of this. Though Hunter, an elementary education major, does not write one anymore, she had her own blog for a year.

“The topic was basically a ‘Day in the Life’ kind of atmosphere. Daily discussions and relatable situations for people to seek advice on and realize they aren’t alone in handling them,” Hunter said.

As someone who suffers from anxiety, she wanted people with similar conditions to read her blog and know what they were feeling every day was normal. She also wanted readers to contribute to ending the stigma surrounding mental health, and to make them feel comfortable in their own skin.

Despite these efforts, as Hunter began college, it became difficult for her to find time to update her blog.

“I thought when I went to college, I’d be that trendy girl who had a blog and balanced studies, socialization, personal life and a blog. And people would be like ‘Wow, how does she do it?’ But, I couldn’t do it,” she said. “I would think of things to write and then life would happen and it would fall to the bottom of the list of things to do until it finally just became the least of my worries and was forgotten about.”

From the time she did spend writing her blog, Hunter found that people with similar backgrounds connected with her, all because reading her posts made them feel more comfortable around her. She found this to be an important skill gained from her experience with blogging.

Sophomore Johanna Beierle doesn’t run her own blog, but she has contributed to two sites, the Odyssey and CollegeFashionista. She promotes these through her Instagram account. Combined, Beierle has been a blogger for two years.

“I knew I needed experience, especially in writing. So freshman year I applied for Simpson College’s Odyssey chapter. This past summer I knew I wanted to pursue fashion so I applied to be a Style Guru for CollegeFashionista,” Beierle said.

Like Hunter, Beierle also experienced the struggle of balancing everything that comes with college and up keeping a blog.

“It is very hard to juggle both classes and writing. Especially for the Odyssey,” she said. “I would have articles due once a week. Sometimes it would get very stressful, but you have to enjoy what you are writing about, otherwise you will put it off.”

Even with the challenge of working everything into her schedule, Beierle has learned important skills from blogging.

“My writing has always been only okay and writing for both the Odyssey and CollegeFashionista has helped me grow. It’s also great skills to put on your resume,” she said.

She also stressed the importance of developing a strong social media presence, which she finds to be the best way to attract readers.

Blogging is a large, ever growing practice happening today. Whether it’s a personal topic, or to practice writing skills, it seems that other skills are gained along the way as well.