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Meet Maya Ernest: The Student Behind @HumansOfBostonU

By Julia Kotaev


Boston University now has its own adaptation of Humans of New York.

Haven’t heard of @humansofbostonu on Instagram yet? Here’s how it started.


Meet Maya Ernest, a junior at BU’s College of Communication double majoring in Journalism & Advertising and minoring in Film & TV. Two years ago, she was a timid freshman from Connecticut who came from a high school with a graduating class of 100 students. Coming to BU, she felt like she didn’t know anyone.

So with her bulky camera, she started Humans of BU as a way to make a larger school feel smaller and learn more about her peers. Previously there had been another Humans of BU account but they had low traction. With Maya starting it back up as a one person show, she’s ended up already gaining over 700+ followers.

When it comes to who she features on the account, it’s completely random. Students, faculty and professors are featured. When she’s around campus, she’ll go up to you and try to get some “weird story” out of you. Her approach is with asking probing questions. By just walking up and talking to people randomly, the content is more natural. If it’s planned, it defeats the mission behind this. It’s not genuine.

The message Humans of BU hopes to exemplify is be more open and understanding of students on campus. “Don’t judge a book by it’s cover -- everyone has something interesting to say.” Maya says.

By the end of the academic year, she hopes people will connect through the page. Maya believes it’s important to have an open mind running this because “I’m bound to meet someone with a different opinion than me.”

In two years, she’ll be ready to pass the torch. “I definitely want this to be something I leave behind. I’m hoping by the time I leave I can have someone or multiple people helping with the account.”


Follow @humansofbostonu on Instagram and Maya at @maya.ernest


If you’re interested in being part of Humans of BU, email Maya at merest@bu.edu


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Writers of the Boston University chapter of Her Campus.
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