Students share mixed feelings about popularity of UH Confessions
We live in an era of social media where Facebook and Twitter seem to rule our lives and control how we interact with each other. Most university students live on social media, especially Facebook, and when we spend a great deal of our time on the site, we have a desire to establish our identity to differentiate ourselves from others.
Last year, another university in Texas began the trend of having a “confessions” page on Facebook where students were able to anonymously submit confessions without having to worry about being judged by their fellow peers.
The trend was seen at UH, Texas A&M and the University of Texas at Austin, with the number of followers going into the thousands and new confessions being posted every 20 minutes.
However, the type of confessions posted on the UH Confessions page can be seen as a detrimental representation of our campus as a whole. The majority of these posts involve sex, drugs, alcohol, racism and other topics that promote unhealthy behavior. The confessions page is distasteful and gives a bad image to our fellow Cougars and any prospective student who is considering UH as the ideal school to pursue their degree.
“The first time I saw the page was in Fall of 2012, and I never responded, since I knew it would be problematic,” said business junior Jimmy Cerna-Reyes.
Reyes also believes that it could be damaging to our school’s reputation that is growing positively as a result of our Tier One research status.
“Even if a student is anonymous, we all know it’s from a UH student, and revealing controversial information for laughs or attacks is ridiculous — I relate it to writing on the bathroom walls in middle school,” Reyes said.
This opinion is shared among some upperclassmen students. Human nutrition and foods senior Mereen Jacob believes that the page could scare away prospective students. “I think UH Confessions gives UH a bad rep, and it’s the last thing this University needs. If anything, UH has been struggling for years, and we’re finally improving and climbing in ranks, and this takes away from the improvement. If I were in high school and I read this, I would want to go somewhere else.”
With UH improving its rank in the Princeton Review as one of the best institutions to attend in the nation, the last thing we need is to scare away potential high school seniors interested in making UH their home for the next four years.
Not every student shares Reyes’ perspective. Petroleum engineering sophomore David Alvarez takes the confession page in a more lighthearted manner as a source for comedic entertainment.
“The people who post the confessions, I feel like most of them are fake, sometimes but not always, but they are funny,” Alvarez said.
He said that he doesn’t find it to be damaging to our school’s reputation; on the contrary, he believes it helps our image.
“It shows we’re a pretty chill campus, and honestly, I haven’t seen anyone on campus from UH Confessions.”
Students can take it lightly, but the UH Confessions page has changed during the past year. Last year, it was fresh, new, original and, most importantly, entertainment. The confessions were humorous and relatable to other students, but now they are degrading to women, promote drug use and make light of serious issues.
The last thing we need is to set a bad example to the underclassman student entering the transitional phase of adulthood with the prospect of newfound independence and freedom. They shouldn’t read that it’s appropriate or OK to engage in promiscuous sexual activity or to use illegal drugs that can eventually lead to devastating consequences.
What you post on the Internet will be there forever, and as a community of Cougars, we should think twice about the message we send.
Opinion columnist Catalina Campos is an English literature senior and may be reached at [email protected]