Campus gets its own ‘Humans of UEA’ page

New York is better


Much like the New York page, two third-years have started Humans of UEA dedicated to those seen on campus and their stories.

Founders Alessandra Mariani and Sele Got started the page after Alessandra spent a semester at Hong Kong University and saw that a page had been dedicated to students there.

“I think the students on campus all like to see things happening at university which add to to student life and experience, so I think seeing people you know or other students you might just see around in a photo and then seeing how they open up about themselves, what they see, their thoughts is inspiring.”

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Sele and Alessandra

“I think what is really inspiring is trying to discover humanity through students and their stories.”

'I fear that when I will leave university I’m going to become another faceless person in a world of organizations and won’t leave a mark in history. I want to be someone that achieves something and that people can look up to and say ‘yea, he helped the world’. I genuinely want make the world a better place’.

“I fear that when I will leave university I’m going to become another faceless person in a world of organizations and won’t leave a mark in history.”

But Alessandra and Sele are in their final year and looking for someone to carry on their legacy. They said: “We both want it to continue on and form a kind of legacy as a part of the UEA experience – for people to know about it and to want to be featured so we definitely need to find someone who’s as inspired by the idea.

“Someone who really wants it to continue and is dedicated so that we can pass the torch on to them, have a ceremony or something.

“We’re thinking even interviews just to make sure we get the right person or people.

“We’re just hoping that the person to take it on will continue to add to it’s success because it’s already gained momentum who knows what it will be like this time next year or the years to come.”

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“Everybody is valuable. we are all precious human beings. But many of us don’t realize it.”

In the first 24 hours of setting the page up, it had already received 123 likes and now has over a thousand. But how do they choose who to talk to?

“I don’t necessarily think it’s just UEA students; it will be anyone who we see around at the time and who is willing to have their picture taken and talk about themselves.

“It’s more of a random selection – we seek people who look interesting or seem to have something to say.

“We’ve only had two say no so far but most people are very comfortable with it and happy to do so.

“The hardest thing is getting them to talk about themselves but sometimes it just naturally flows and you get a great sentence or conversation going.”

'I don't believe in destiny. But I want myself to be a writer, and that is what I'll be'.

“I don’t believe in destiny. But I want myself to be a writer, and that is what I’ll be.”

Initially the thought of going up to someone and asking them to discuss deep issues or themselves openly seemed quite daunting but the pair have found ways to make the process a little easier:

“We’ve just had to get confident in doing it and not being afraid of the awkwardness. We came up with a list of questions to ask if they begin to get stuck, but of course the best messages are the ones that come straight from their heart.”

'The truth will always prevail, no matter how many people will try to sweep it under the carpet'.

“The truth will always prevail, no matter how many people will try to sweep it under the carpet.”

And there’s nothing they won’t publish: “There’s no censorship – what is said goes up because they’re true feelings or accounts and I think people need to open their minds to ideas and thoughts which is why pages like this or Humans Of New York are so popular.”

Even though the page is weeks old, I asked whether there were any features which stuck with them or that stand out. They said: “There’s a recent one with a guy who’s grandfather was from India – it was exactly what we wanted and it was inspiring to see him talk about his grandfather.

“But I think every one of them has something interesting about them which makes me glad that we set it up.”

'My biggest inspiration has always been my grandfather. He came from India in the 1920s. He started off as a nobody, he worked as somebody who serves tea. But look at where he is now. He made a life for himself, and never stopped working hard. He constantly motivates me to be better than I am today and to do more with my life. No point sitting around doing nothing all day. You gotta make things happen'.

“My biggest inspiration has always been my grandfather.”