This article was written by our work experience student Lizzie:
Being a year 10 student who is almost sixteen, the prospect of work experience seemed a little dull. My expectations were that I’d be sitting in an office twiddling my thumbs while people got on with doing something very boring. The experience was very different.
It was all based around computing and social networking so you would think I would be quite experienced in this area right? No. Yes, I do use Facebook and quite frequently, but I am one of the most socially awkward and gauche teenage girls you’ll ever meet. Not only this, Facebook is the only social networking site I have an account with. Twitter, Tumblr, MySpace and blogging were basically alien to me.
I had heard about Twitter through my friend who is absolutely obsessed with Justin Bieber. So in science I have to listen as she gabbles on about how he tweeted this and Twitpic-ed that, so I at least had a rough idea about Twitter, but never really intended on using myself. I wanted to get some other way of communicating with my friends or expressing myself through blogs or pictures but I just simply couldn’t be bothered and thought it would just be another ‘Facebook’. I knew they were different but I just didn’t want even more people complaining about their life, saying how much they loved their boyfriends or saying how much they hate someone though a status. Just tell them to their face!
To cut a long story short, my outlook on social networking wasn’t very good and my experience with it was just as bad, which probably wasn’t the best attitude as the task was mostly to do with it.
Firstly I had to decide the ‘walk of the month’ for the Devon County Council website. So it wasn’t like fake work that they were just going to throw away when I left, it was something that I had actually chosen and written myself that was going out to the public.
It then came to posting it out from the Devon County Council’s twitter account I didn’t really mind, but I thought it would generate no interest at all seeing as I was a work experience student they’d think ‘What does she know?’ But anyway we sent it out. We also sent it to other walking groups in Devon to gain views and interest and to spread it as far as possible. I was pleasantly surprised by the amount of attention I managed to generate.
Within 49 seconds I’d had 17 clicks which surely must be some kind of record for the Communications Team I felt pretty chuffed! And by approximately 4 minutes I had had 37 clicks. A conversation even started. I was soon tying with their top featured/ clicked tweet/ event on their twitter! Well you know everyone wants to know about me, I thought sarcastically! I started to see the fun side of twitter – getting attention!
But all jokes aside, this was when I realised that social networking and blogging isn’t all pointless banter, it can be used to help people and raise awareness for something that is actually worth reading and worth taking a few seconds of your life.