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Forget prospectuses and campus tours: prospective students are now looking to meme groups to discover what life is really like at the universities they’re hoping to attend.
In 2015, a now-deleted Facebook meme page called Dank Memes for Edgy Teens was launched. Its popularity inspired many others to create pages and groups named with the “____ Memes for ____ Teens” template. There are communities for every interest and niche group, from Middle Class Memes For Rees-Moggian Teens to Hypoglycaemic Memes for Diabetic Teens.
The trend particularly took off among college students in the US, where Ivy League and other prestigious schools each have their own meme group, such as UC Berkeley Memes For Edgy Teens and Dartmouth Memes For Cold AF Teens.
Memes are not just entertainment, but a means of communication for the young members of these communities. The meme groups bring students together, as a way to make friends and bond with their classmates over shared experiences and feelings. Their relatable, location-specific content is a natural a step on from the “You know you’re from ____ when….” listicles popularised by Buzzfeed. Long-running rivalries play out in meme wars, where students trash talk other colleges’ sports teams. Meanwhile, the top meme creators (known as “memelords”) become mini celebrities and get recognised on campus.
These communities have even gained popularity outside of the colleges where they started, and have far more members than the total student body. High schoolers and international students check out meme groups before deciding where to apply, gaining a more realistic and rounded picture of college life than the university’s promotional assets, such as their website and prospectus.
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