Instagram Contests Helps Students Say Thanks


Credit: Williston Instagram.

Starting this year, the Instagram Photo Contest is a way for Williston students to show their gratitude during the holiday season by sending photos of their sport teams, or bonding time with their dorm mates, classmates, and friends.

So far, the winners have been picked out daily and we can see all the lovely photos via the Williston’s Instagram, run by the Communications Department.

The Willistonian had a chance to speak with Kate Lawless, Communications Writer and Coordinator, and also the head of the competition.

Lawless shared that the school wants to boost students’ spirit during the three weeks between Thanksgiving and Winter break. They felt Instagram was a great way to share to people around the world a student-centered view of life on campus.

After two weeks, Lawless received more than 40 photos, from not only current Williston students, but also alumni. The daily winners are picked by the Communications office

Lawless hopes that this healthy competition will help Williston become an environment of gratitude.

“We hope students get excited by seeing their peers’ photos and become motivated to share a photo that they took or found that represents something they are grateful for,” said Lawless. “We also hope the contest gives students a chance to think about what they are thankful for, because no matter what circumstances we are in, there is always something to be grateful for, even if it’s just being alive.”

Since there are about four photos being sent in a day, there are certain criteria the judges go through in order to pick the winner.

“We look for a photo that’s well composed and well lit, that’s not blurry, and that tells a story,” said Lawless. “We also try to show a variety of categories of photos, representing boys and girls, arts and sports, dorm life, campus life, academic life, and, perhaps most importantly, dog life. Thank you, Lola” she joked, in reference to the Malinowski family dog.

Ellie Wolfe ’19, was one of the lucky winners  who received a $5 Tandem gift card.

“It felt really good,” Ellie said. “I was feeling very stressed about the whole college process and assessments. So getting that ‘You are a winner, Ellie’ felt really good and helped me boost up my spirit” she said.

Erin Chai ’21 won thanks to her photo of the volleyball team.

“I felt happy because the volley team is like my actual family and I really miss them because the season was over,” Erin said. “So the photo was like a beautiful memory for me to look back at and I was happy to share it.”

The Communication Office is also open to new ideas about social media. If students have any thoughts on a fun contest or type of post, or if they’d like to do an Instagram takeover, please email Lawless at [email protected]