The CSU of Instagram
As students returned to in-person classes this semester, some parts of campus stayed virtual in the form of fun CSU-related Instagram meme accounts.
Written by: Courtney Byrnes
Sitting in Cafe Ah-Roma across from Cleveland State’s campus, a group of students sits around a table conversing, when one wonders aloud to the group, “I wonder who runs the @csubathroom Instagram account.”
If you have been on Instagram at all recently, you may have noticed a few accounts popping up touting a version of the CSU name or logo. These accounts include affirmation posts with purposely over-the-top edits, Harry Styles photoshopped around campus, anonymously submitted diary entries and — of course — ratings of the bathrooms on campus.
With campus life returning, students are embracing the sense of community and finding ways to connect with one another once again. For some students, this is joining clubs, playing sports or attending events on campus. For others, this is through entertaining, CSU-related posts that have allowed them to amass a social media following.
While these students wish to continue staying anonymous, they did share what their experience has been like to be the campus “Radio Rebel” — as the creators of @clevelandstateaffirmations and @harriesofCSU put it.
Have you ever used the bathrooms in the Music Building at CSU and thought life couldn’t get any worse? Surprisingly, this abomination of a facility received a 3.3 rating by @csubathroom, which is not the worst, but it’s also not the best, so there is hope.
“Letting people know where the best place to commit such a human action and letting them know the best place to do so privately, to do so comfortably,” the mastermind behind the bathroom reviews said, “that has been the best part.”
Inspired by boredom, this student minoring in chemistry has made it their mission to serve the campus community so we all can “keep calm and sh*t on.”
“[The account] will simply just be there for anyone who attends Cleveland State to see and have knowledge of where the best place to use the bathroom is,” they said.
Interested in supporting the mission? @csubathroom also sells hoodies and accepts contributions from followers — who sometimes learn the true identity of the creator.
Cleveland State’s first and most active affirmations account has four students providing the campus community with relevant affirmations and memes. The idea is to have simple phrases that you can speak into existence and have come true, like one post that reads: “Magnus does not scare me,” with a backdrop of the Viking surrounded by hearts.
“We’re all sophomores at CSU. We’re a mixed bag of majors, including nursing, early childhood education, urban studies and film,” they said of their identities.
After being inspired by other college pages and finding CSU lacking such an essential service, one student stepped up to the plate.
“My friend from Kent sent me a post from a KSU affirmations page and I immediately looked for a CSU affirmations page to follow. At the time there weren’t any so I thought, ‘Fine, I’ll do it myself’— kind of had a Thanos moment,” the original account creator said.
While they joked about passing the account off to some underclassmen after they graduate, the account will probably be short-lived and eventually die off, but it has been a fun experience while it lasts.
“It’s been a laugh, really,” they said. “It’s fun to not only make a meme out of our own experiences but also get suggestions from followers. It’s entertaining to interact with peers and hear about their stories while on campus.”
Another affirmations page, @cletings, is run by a freshman marketing major who makes aesthetic, colorful posts in the top text/bottom text meme format, sprinkled with sparkles to add to the look.
“It’s basically just fun, harmless posts that are specific to CSU for the relativity factor, but broad enough so that all different types of students can understand,” they said.
Just like @clevelandstateaffirmations, they were inspired to start the page after seeing friends sharing posts from their own college’s affirmations page. For them, it was seeing posts from @ohiouaffirmations.
While some of the accounts take submissions from followers, the magic you see on @cletings is all from the mind of one person.
“I usually get inspired at random times,” they said. “Today, I was walking to Starbucks and it smelled horrendous outside — like it typically does — so I added that to my notes as inspiration.”
Have you ever found yourself in class not being able to focus on your studies because you ran into the love of your life earlier and regret not saying anything to them?
@csu.missed.connections has you covered! Just share your story, shoot your shot and hope they follow the account to see it. But honestly, if they don’t, then that’s probably a red flag — how can you not follow CSU’s anonymous diary account?
“In this day and age, we’re all a little bit antisocial, sort of, we’re a little bit shy, so I feel like it’s a cool way to get to know people,” the freshman middle childhood education major behind the account said.
You can share your submission by either using the Google form in the account’s bio or by sending a DM — just avoid vague descriptions that could be about anyone. We’re all nosy and want ALL the details!
Then your story will be posted on a solid color background in typewriter font as we all wonder “OMG is this about me?” — despite having never taken a calculus course at CSU.
While the affirmations pages occasionally throw in a Harry Styles-inspired post, like @cletings’ “I will casually run into Harry Styles walking around Cleveland” post, Harries of CSU don’t have to look far to find where they belong.
The aptly named @harriesofcsu account was created by a psychology major and answers the question we are all asking: What would it be like if Harry was a CSU student?
“All I hope to achieve is to help make a community of CSU Harries (someone talked about making a group chat and I think that would be so cool) and to make people laugh,” they said. “College can be really tough; if my posts give people some serotonin, I’ve done my job.”
Inspired after a friend showed them the “Harries of BGSU” account, they thought a CSU version would be fun and began to edit and post images of Harry Styles around campus and downtown, even giving the pop star a job at Subway.
Recently, the account has been sprinkling in posts submitted by Cleveland State students who attended the Harry Styles Love on Tour concert at the Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse in October.
Looking for more CSU-related entertainment on Instagram? There is something for everyone, like another affirmations page @clestateaffirmations, friend of the art school @themiddoughroach, and more reviewers such as @csubadparking, @cleveland.state.elevators and @csu_campusreveiw.