Behind the scenes of EWU Confessions

By Karlee Van De Venter, Arts and Features Reporter

   EWU students craving the latest gossip have had a main source for all the campus tea during the past couple years.

  The anonymous owner of the @EWU_Confessions account on Instagram (and @ConfessionsEWU on Twitter) has been making waves across campus. With more than 5,000 Instagram followers and over 500 Twitter followers, he’s been posting student confessions for almost two years. 

     Posting several times a day, providing outreach for students in difficult situations, hosting events, and promoting clubs and organizations, the account is consistently active. The Easterner spoke with him about what it’s like to be the masked face of the account. 

EWU Confessions

   The Easterner: To start off, I want to know how you got the idea for the account, and how you started growing it. What were the early days of the account like?

     EWU Confessions: My high school had a page similar to this where an anonymous admin/content creator ran a superlatives page. They would take random seniors and give them super creative “awards,” such as “most likely to win a state championship,” “nicest smile,” “funniest drama queen” and things like that which focused on students’ characteristics that they weren’t normally complimented on. It gave students an opportunity to be seen by their classmates and appreciated. 

     When I started the account, I thought it would only get around 300 followers and then it would be gone. I thought it would be talked about for a week and then fail miserably! I was able to start growing the account through giving the students what they wanted to see; drama. 

     The early days of the account were slow. My first three posts were my makeshift rules and guidelines for the account, telling students how to submit confessions anonymously, and creating a core set of rules that I knew I wouldn’t break. I believe a large part of my success has been sticking to my core guidelines and trying to stay unbiased on my account. My account is an escape from all the everyday stress of a college student. I wanted to show students that whatever they’re going through, they are not alone. 

     TE: How do you feel the account has changed since the beginning? 

     EC: The account has achieved a lot of growth in these last two years! In the beginning, the confessions were pretty tame and mellow. I would post probably 3-5 times a week. Flash forward to today and I am posting around five times a day and I have over 3,000 unposted confessions. I went from getting 20 likes on my post to jumping up to 1,000+ likes today. 

     I am beginning to transition to posting more quality content on my page. I like to get students’ opinions on local topics, such as the recent faculty report regarding their wishes to drop athletics from EWU. I try to give students the high quality content that they deserve. 

     TE: How has running the account changed your college experience? 

     EC: Before I started my account, I was a quiet freshman who didn’t have a ton of friends or a large social life. Today I have 5,000 followers with many students begging to meet me. 

EWU confessions

     Through EWU Confessions, I was able to create an outlet for students to express themselves. With that being said, I have been able to use my platform to help students in a large majority of ways! 

     Through the anonymous confessions, I get to hear all of the drama on and off campus. This comes with benefits but also some flaws that I did not know that I would experience. 

     I have been able to get more involved with clubs and organizations that are lesser represented to give them some positive publicity they may not have received without my account. 

     I have been able to work with local businesses in Cheney and Spokane to give great deals to students! 

     TE: Can you think of a time where you feel like you really made a difference because of the account? 

     EC: With the help of other students on campus, I was able to throw a Halloween party! We raised money through charging admission for students, and all of the money that was raised was donated to an Eastern student who is battling cancer. 

     And with the help of a fraternity on campus, I was able to host a water pong tournament. The winner received a $25 Amazon gift card, and the money raised was donated to the same student. The event also doubled as a canned food drive, where cans of food were donated to the EWU Food Pantries! 

     TE: You’ve mentioned online that sometimes you get really intense issues confessed to you. What do you do in those situations? 

     EC: There have been many times where students direct message me needing to vent about personal problems. Whenever I experience a student who is struggling, I like to be someone who will really listen and generally we come up with a solution! 

“Whenever I experience a student who is struggling, I like to be someone who will really listen and generally we come up with a solution!”- EWU Confessions

     When students come to me about their emotional struggles, depression, sexual assault, et cetera, I direct them to the resources on campus who are trained in aiding students who go through these situations. 

     TE: I know people ask you this a lot, but do you have any plans for what you’ll do with the account after you graduate? When are you graduating? 

     EC: As of this moment, nothing is set in stone. I have been toying with the option of raising an apprentice who would take over the account after I graduate in Spring 2021…hopefully. 

     As of now, I am not stressing about it because I have over a year left. I am enjoying the ride and trying to give students at EWU something entertaining! 

     TE: Last question, is there anything else you want to address or say to the students here? 

     EC: This is cheesy, but I would like to say thank you to every single one of my followers. If it weren’t for followers, I would not have any content to post and my page would not exist! EWU Students have been there for me through the ups and downs, and I have been able to make a lot of friends whom I wouldn’t have if it weren’t for the account. 

     I always appreciate the messages talking about students who love my account and my captions. The messages that make me the most happy are messages about how I have built a mini community for students who have never felt included on campus. It makes me feel like all the time I have put into this was worth it!