By Stephanie Wintling
As I begin to think about preparations for my new Sterry residents, all I keep coming back to is how can I utilize YouTube? Other housing professionals may be shocked by this, because of course there is the preparing for my staff, prepping the building, and thinking through welcome week programs BUT my brain can not get off how unique and far reaching a YouTube channel could be for my hall. What’s the deal with the obsession of YouTube utilization? Because of that vast resource YouTube has become for this generation.
Here are the various ways our students utilize YouTube:
Try to become YouTube stars!Here’s an article where TubeMogul presents the Top 10 YouTube Stars and their rough estimates of income from their videos. It’s quite intriguing to me that Natalie Tran is only 24, the inventors of Smosh are 24, “Fred” is 17, Ryan Higa is only 21, Philip Defranco is 25, and Shane Dawson is only 22. All of them are making over $100,000 from YouTube videos. This is why our students enjoy YouTube and some even attempt to make their own channels. Every day they see another individual rise to fame because they made one hilarious post and it went viral.
A creative outlet! The decline of music programs in public schools because of lack of funding has led students to find another avenue. Just look at the top 100 all time played videos on YouTube, notice a pattern? Majority of the videos are music. Granted these videos are from music artists but occasionally you’ll stumble along a cover or someone playing their instrument so profoundly they receive attention. This video is #4 on the most liked music videos of all time on YouTube.
Learn new things! I shared at the NASPA Region 3 Summer Symposium that I actually learned how to curl my hair from YouTube. My mom was super busy growing up and I never thought to ask until I was in college. Embarrassed I did not already know this skill, I just YouTubed it. This is one thing I LOVE about YouTube because in the privacy of our own homes we can learn things we are embarrassed to ask anyone else. College students can utilize YouTube in the same way. Like how to do laundry, how to fold your clothes, how to iron, and how to cook. There is also an Educational YouTube were you could learn about economics or any topic that suits your fancy.
Pure Entertainment! This is what majority perceive the use of YouTube as and with good reason because majority of the videos that end of going viral are entertaining. Here are some of my favorites in case you are in need of a good laugh: Fainting Goats, Bird Singing Let the Bodies Hit the Floor, David After Dentist, and Baby Laughing.
The options are really unlimited with the uses of YouTube and here are some examples of how Universities are utilizing YouTube. Admissions, Summer School, Athletics, Orientation, Class Assignments, and Housing Information.
This why my brain will not allow me to stop thinking about the wondrous amounts of information I could provide my residents on the channel. We could provide an introduction of our res. life staff, custodial staff, maintenance staff. Demonstrate how to check your mail , receive a package, throw your trash in the dumpster, resolve a roommate conflict, find out about programs, get involved with Hall Council, and respectively use the kitchens. We could also do a bi-weekly Q&A where students e-mail me question I answer in a YouTube video. Ever wonder how to reach the students that never come out of their room no matter what you and your staff try?? Well this might just work in reaching them.
Does your institution utilize YouTube? What are some of your favorite YouTube uses and/or videos?