Selfies help students connect, boost confidence

By Shikha Duttyal

Post-it notes scribbled with positive comments near students’ selfies were part of a movement to improve peoples’ body image at a Wednesday event.

Neptune and Douglas residence halls organized the Self-ie-Perspective event from 7 to 9 p.m. in Neptune Central Hall.

More than 150 students came to Neptune and wrote positive comments on Post-it notes for more than 300 selfies taken by students and hung up across the walls of Neptune.

Sophomore psychology major Kalenna Kaske created the Self-ie-Perspective page on Facebook, which students used to submit their photos, and organized the event.

“I saw this Dove video on Facebook where a group of girls with selfies posted concerns about their looks, and I thought that we could do the same on campus, as well,” Kaske said.

Zachery Cramer, freshman business management major, worked with Kaske on the project.

“I want people to come out and use the chance to express themselves, and there is something for everyone to take home and gain,” Cramer said. “We were not expecting more than 40 participants, but we are happy to see that already over 350 students have posted their pictures on the page.”

Junior nursing major Sarah Schwarz was one of hundreds who submitted her picture to be displayed in Neptune.

“I feel that it is not we but the society that makes us feel that we are not worth it,” Schwarz said. “But now after reading the comments on my picture I am trying to be more comfortable with myself.”

Adam Riegle, Neptune West hall director, collaborated with Douglas advisers for about four months to educate students on positive body image and how to love one’s self. The presentation showed how women and men feel self-conscious about their looks yet society may see them in a positive way.

Riegle said each picture on the Facebook page received an average of 20 likes and 10 comments.

“It is harder to forget a criticism than forgetting a compliment,” Riegle said.

Freshman nursing major Alesha Gauntt said she was happy with the unique initiative.

“Gap in someone’s teeth, scar on the face or the hair texture is what makes us unique, and it is beautiful to be unique,” Gauntt said.