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Blogging gives students edge in real world

Blogging has become increasingly popular over the last decade as a way to self-publish ideas and interact with an audience online. Sites like Blogger, Weebly and WordPress make it easy for the average Joe to create professional-looking blogs comparable to the ones written by larger corporations like the Huffington Post.

According to a Hubspot report based on responses from about 1,000 professionals who were familiar with their company’s marketing strategy, 25 percent rated their company’s blog as critical to their business, while 56 percent considered them either important or useful.

Janet Davison, a contemporary media and journalism professor who is teaching an introduction to multiplatform storytelling course this semester, said that for her students, it is definitely worth it.

“The value of blogging is to take a topic, idea or story and dig into it a lot more deeply than you could even do with a Facebook post, Twitter post or even with a link to the story,” Davison said. “It allows people to go outside the limits of social media and the traditional news story.”

Davison said many media outlets tend to have blogs adjunct to the rest of what they do. For instance, newspapers tend to use them on their websites to complement news stories and allow reporters to write about them from a different angle.

“It’s important for our students as they move into the media field in this century that it would be valuable to have that skill,” Davison said.

Senior Laine Greblunas blogs about everything related to being a girl in college. Through her profile on Blogger.com, she connects her Spotify playlists to her blog and creates interactive music reviews for her readers, along with other topics like baking and crafting.

“It’s definitely benefited me in the sense of going into a workplace,” Greblunas said. “I’m a mass communication major and when I’ve gone to internship fairs, I actually have my blog on my resume and point it out to possible employers.”

Senior Nadia Tronick is majoring in public relations and minoring in political science and speech communications and has done several blogging campaigns, her most recent being about her volunteer work.

“It shows I can video tape and promotes me because it gets my work out there,” Tronick said. “It keeps me on the edge of social media and understanding it.”

Tronick said blogging is a valuable tool for her because she hopes to one day be a public relations specialist for a politician.

“I think I’ll always have some tie to blogging,” she said. “Once I hit the workforce I’ll always have a blog, but the next big one I’ll continue to do are political reports and articles and my opinion of them.”

Senior Tobaria Ruffin is majoring in mass communication and started blogging in Davison’s class.

“I tried to set up my own blog before the class started but I didn’t, but once I was forced to, I think I’ll continue to do it,” Ruffin said.

Ruffin currently writes about quotes he finds intriguing, but hopes to one day work with a sports team somewhere either filming or in some sort of social media aspect.

“I think that in the long run, me continuing to write will help when it comes time to look for a job because they want to know if you can write,” he said.

Davison said it gets tricky for students not in the mass communication field to blog because a person wouldn’t want their nurse or psychologist blogging about their personal problems, but blogging can still show a level of intelligence and complement any skill set for plenty of professions.

“Certainly if a person has skills in Twitter and Facebook, that demonstrates your ability to condense information and load them into a social media format, but blogging provides the writer and the reader with the opportunity to develop ideas more fully,” she said.

Greblunas said her blog has taught her to watch what she writes and posts on all social media sites.

“Through my blog I want to be perceived as me, and if for any reason I posted a rant that wasn’t professional and was just about what I was feeling at a specific moment, I would lose all credibility,” she said.