Many Georgia Tech students are thought-provoking writers, talented YouTubers, or captivating podcasters. However, without a centralized place to exchange ideas, not everyone is able to share their voice with a wide audience. That’s why fourth-year Margarita Groisman from the H. Milton Stewart School of Industrial and Systems Engineering (ISyE) decided to create The Buzz, a student-run digital media site that empowers individual content creators at Georgia Tech.
“I thought it would be awesome to have a platform for communication where students could express different ideas,” said Groisman. “I want to build a community on campus that really values open dialogue and communication.”
Groisman started forming a team for The Buzz in Fall 2020, and the site – hosted on Medium – officially launched in Spring 2021. Her team includes students with a range of majors working in positions including editing, operations and growth, marketing, and technology. In addition to serving as president, she occasionally writes articles for the site on topics she personally finds interesting.
The Buzz offers a wide range of content under the categories of life, art, economics, research, tech, and clubs. One content creator who goes by the pseudonym Techconomist writes about the modern economy in the format of reader-submitted “Dear Techconomist” questions. Another creator, second-year computer science major Christian Kim, has a series of YouTube videos called Life@Tech that gives a glimpse into living on campus, from ranking Georgia Tech dining options to a Sting Break vlog.
“We wanted to make a modern platform that took into account how students are communicating today,” said Groisman. “I worked at The Daily Beast before as a software engineering intern, and they are a very different type of news publication. They have cool features like the Cheat Sheet – a list of 10 featured articles for the day – and lots of video content. They really try to go to the edge of communication, and that inspired me to create a platform that's more innovative here at Georgia Tech.”
Multimedia is highly encouraged, which is evident from the wide variety of publications. In the podcast GTtea, second-year computational media student Vincent Batts discusses changing majors, provides a first-hand perspective on having his own dorm room during the pandemic, and interviews other students about their college experiences.
Clubs have also contributed posts, including Epic Intentions Consulting and the Atlanta Student Film Festival. While much of the content is created exclusively for the site, some is shared from other platforms like YouTube and Spotify. To help with engagement, new publications are promoted on the Instagram account @thebuzz_gt.
Fourth-year business administration student Justin Scott Creamer, who recently posted about a new song he wrote and his experience with music, expressed his positive experience with the platform. “The Buzz is an easily navigable site that allowed me to design a blog post that includes images, hyperlinks, and clean formatting,” he said. “The process was simple and user-friendly.”
The Buzz has a unique style of working with content creators that allows them the flexibility to be artistic with the opportunity to receive guidance. Some students have defined plans for their publications, but others with more general concepts and ideas prefer to consult with the editing team, which helps them organize their ideas. However, the creative process is always led by the content creators.
Several other students also expressed enjoying creating content for the platform. "It's exciting to write articles for The Buzz ― it gives smaller writers like me a chance to share their voice in an easily accessible, simple format,” said first-year industrial engineer Ryan Rodriguez.
Another student, third-year mechanical engineering major Dara Bolodeoku, commented, "Posting on The Buzz gives us the freedom to be our authentic selves and have complete control with what we share with our audience. It’s a great community to be part of."
In addition to the current content, Groisman believes there is a big opportunity with research communications. Given the wide variety of innovation among Georgia Tech departments, keeping up with the latest news is not always feasible, but The Buzz could provide a centralized location to stay informed. To achieve this goal, the team has been reaching out to different research centers on campus.
“We want research labs to be able to create their own accounts and post updates through our site,” Groisman explained. “We don't want just students; we also want staff, administration, and everyone who is part of the Tech community.”
Several other projects are in progress, such as developing a standalone website that would include more features than the current site, as well as launching three new podcasts. With a diverse collection of engaging content and upcoming works, The Buzz is sure to have something for everyone, and Groisman is excited to be paving the way for new voices to be heard.
If you are interested in being a content creator, please fill out this online form or contact The Buzz at email@example.com.
H. Milton Stewart School of Industrial and Systems Engineering