My Centre Life: “Candid observation deck” reveals students’ daily lives
My Centre Life, a blog that offers student perspectives on life at Centre College, will begin its seventh season this fall. But what began as a collection of monthly journal entries continues to evolve.
“My Centre Life began in 2005 to spotlight the lives of first-year students who submitted monthly journal entries to the Communications office. The submissions would be edited for content and grammar and then posted to the web,” says Adam Brown ’07, assistant director of admission for communication. “Last year, we took some inspiration from our friends at MIT and let both underclassmen and upperclassmen blog unedited.”
Brown, who served as the digital recruitment specialist and communications fellow before promotions in July 2011 and August 2009, began Centre’s forays into social media. But among Centre’s variety of social media platforms, Brown says, My Centre Life is unique.
“The blog’s voice is exclusively made up of students,” Brown says. “There are a number of Facebook pages, Twitter accounts, and the like, but they’re all written by staff. For prospective students — and alumni, for that matter — who are curious about the day-to-day life of Centre students, My Centre Life is the most candid observation deck. What’s more, fans can interact with our bloggers in the comments of their posts, as well as submit questions which will be answered on the front page.”
Although the cast of My Centre Life changes from year to year, some bloggers return for multiple seasons. Blogger selection is competitive, and ultimately the chosen bloggers reflect Centre’s multi-dimensional student body.
“This year, we sought out some of Centre’s best writers and storytellers, as well as dynamic personalities from across the board,” Brown says. “You’ll find a first-year golfer, a pre-med jokester, a theatre auteur, the Centre Queers and Allies external affairs officer, the president of the Math Club, a self-described ‘professional Norton Center event attender,’ a transfer student from the honors college at a state university, and a resident assistant for first-year students.”
Two bloggers return for a second season in 2011-2012.
“Andrew Hornick ’12, who blogged as a first-year student in 2008-2009, returns as a senior. Expect hilarity,” Brown says. “And then CJ Donald ’14, who debuted last year as first-year student from Memphis, also makes a return. CJ wrote a landmark piece this past spring about diversity at Centre, which poignantly captured what life is like here as a minority student.”
Donald says he returned as a blogger because My Centre Life allows him to write about how much he loves Centre while honestly representing his everyday life. And, he says, participating in the blog does come with some recognition.
“One parent recognized me last year during Parents Weekend, and a few teachers have commented on things I have written,” he says. “I think it’s a blessing. It’s nice to get recognition for something I would do even if there was no recognition involved.”
Alyssa Brown ’15, from Chattanooga, Tenn., says that joining the My Centre Life cast this year will help her expand her horizons as a Centre student.
“I also wanted to meet lots of different people,” she says. “I figured writing my activities would be as fun and as easy as talking, which I do frequently!”
Hornick says his return to this year’s cast is something of a dream come true.
“I’m one of those MCL alumni who just couldn’t let go of the dream,” he jokes. “I’m seeking to recapture the good old days. The road back has been a long, winding, and occasionally dark path, and I’m ready to dive back into the world of minor internet celebrity with gusto.”
The 2011-2012 edition of My Centre Life will begin next Thursday. To access the blog, visit the Centrehomepage and click the My Centre Life button at the bottom of the page.