A look at Wake Forest’s favorite Study Buddy

You may know her as Study Buddy Ann

You may know her from class, from around campus, or from your dorm. But more likely, you know her from the Wake Forest University snapchat account. She’s loud, she’s outrageous, and she’s funny.

You may not know her in person, but regardless she’s your study buddy. When she isn’t taking dance breaks in the ZSR library or telling you nice things about yourself, she is just a regular Wake Forest student who loves the new Zick’s menu like everybody else.

I had the opportunity to talk with Ann Nguyen about herself and her popular role of Study Buddy Ann on our university’s Snapchat account.

So who is the real Ann Nguyen?

I am a junior here at Wake Forest. Along with doing the Snapchat for the school (@wfuniversity), I also take photos for the university. I am a Sociology and Studio Art double major, so I have always been into art, videography and other forms of multimedia work.

How did you become Study Buddy Ann?

I have always been really into Snapchat, I think my friends can attest to that because I am always using Snapchat just for fun. One day, I thought that I could make this into something bigger and do it for the school, so I just reached out to a person who is the social media coordinator of all of Wake Forest University.

When it came time for finals last semester the social media contact said to try it out and to send her some ideas. So, I sent her a schedule and the first thing I said to her was “I am going to call myself Study Buddy Ann,” and it just has gone up from there.

So do you usually plan out your snap stories beforehand or does it happen spontaneously?

When I first started doing Snapchat for the school, I actually sent a two week outline of everything I was going to do each day. It was very detailed, I would say. I didn’t exactly plan every single snap I was going to take, but I did plan the overall theme of the day like study spots, tips on how to survive finals week, or little inspirational messages.

From then on though, it was more of a back and forth collaboration between the social media person and me. So right now, it is much more lax and much less scheduling, but I usually get it approved before I snap.

Do you have any goals as Study Buddy Ann?

It started off as something fun. Study Buddy Ann has grown to reimagine how social media can be something that connects people, bring people positive energy, and depict a truer self-image.

My biggest goal as Study Buddy Ann is to be a source of support that lingers behind the minds of Wake Forest students. At this school, we always get so stressed out with all our work and sometimes we feel really lonely in whatever settings we may be in. So my goal for Study Buddy Ann has become for people to feel good about themselves and for people to know that there are other people out there who are willing to be unapologetic and true to themselves.

Since you are everybody’s favorite study buddy, do you have any study tips as the second half of the semester commences?

It is kind of a big honor to be someone’s study buddy. I think a good tip is that sometimes it’s okay to stop studying. I think we get so caught up in trying to be perfect in everything we do. Sometimes we get lost along the way and put ourselves in situations that compromise our health, emotional and physical.

Sometimes, the best study tip is that you can just take a break.

What about any Snapchat tips?

I’ll tell y’all a Snapchat secret that I use. People are always asking me how I post so many text lines on snapchats. The secret is if you go into your notes or iMessage application and press the enter button a couple of times, you can make multiple blank lines and if you copy those lines back into Snapchat, you get multiple lines for text.

Do you ever get people you don’t know recognizing you on campus?

Yes, it has happened. It has happened in so many ways. I am still completely shocked, but completely grateful at the people who are willing to be so vulnerable and open with me about how much they appreciate me.

Some examples include some people who are timid or unsure. I will always introduce myself as Ann. I just want people to know that I am also a human being. I always ask what their names are, too.

There are some interactions where people will scream. “IT’S STUDY BUDDY ANN” and that has caught me off guard sometimes. I’m sometimes awkward, and I embrace it, but sometimes it catches me off guard. People sometimes just take a video of me or Snapchat of me. I always try to interact with them, too.

What have been some unexpected experiences as Wake Forest’s own Snapchat star?

So when I do Study Buddy Ann, I get a lot of prospective students messaging me on Snapchat or tweeting at me or at the school. I even had one come up to me. Sometimes on Snapchat, they’ll ask me about the admissions process and tell me they have applied and so on.

What have been the best experiences about being Study Buddy Ann?

I think some of the best things about being Study Buddy Ann are all the interactions I have had with people. Also, really transforming the way that Wake does social media, and I think that is really cool – to actually encapsulate the student life with a student in it.

The second part, that is kind of funny, is Yik Yak. The yaks that I see about me on our school’s Yik Yak are some of the funniest things I have ever read. And I have seen negative things about me on there, but in less than two minutes, those Yaks are gone. It’s amazing to see how many people kind of appreciate me and have my back and downvote these things. It is funny that some people think I am a piece of [university] propaganda, that people will comment on my study habits, or people will even compliment me.

Lastly, any message for your fans?

Don’t be afraid to Snapchat in public.

I also want people to feel comfortable with emailing me and talking to me if they ever want to grab lunch and or grab coffee. I am just a student on this campus. So reach out. A stranger is just a study buddy that you haven’t met yet. So say hi, be you, and be wild. Study Buddy Ann checking out.

Wake Forest