The Weekly Ringer

The University of Mary Washington Student Newspaper

Juggling passions and priorities: Mastering the art of content creation while excelling in academic life at UMW

4 min read
Three open computers work on creating content

As technology progresses, more content creation opportunities appear. | Marvin Meyer, Unsplash


Staff Writer

In a world blurred by the glow of screens and the buzz of notifications, a new kind of student emerges from the academic halls we’ve known. They’re not only just armed with textbooks and lecture notes; they carry cameras, microphones and a burning desire to weave their stories into the digital tapestry of our times—the age of the Content Creator. 

Navigating this new frontier is not easy, raising the question: How can students balance their academic responsibilities with this creative hobby? Creating content has skyrocketed with young adults in search of being the next up-and-coming creators. Being someone who creates content online, it has become an obsession. 

As a content creator myself, finals season is even more stressful than ever before. This week alone, I am packed with assignments like papers, exams and presentations. Because of that, I have to decide whether to spend a couple of hours creating videos or live streaming or use that time to study. As of late, I haven’t been able to set time aside to create content for social media either from exhaustion or just a lack of motivation to sit down and just create something. Now, I find it hard to sit down and get on Photoshop and make content how I used to when I first discovered the software and its capabilities. 

I have found a serious passion for the process of creating content online. The recording and editing process just comes like clockwork when they are in tune with the video idea. However, this does take a lot of time out of my day, and it is stressful to maintain a consistent streaming and posting schedule along with keeping up with my academic work. 

UMW has many creative students, and some of the most creative are those who upload different kinds of content. These students fall in love with posting content and entertaining their communities. We creators want to be there for the community that we have built, but we also understand that we have a responsibility to take care of our assignments.

Freshman Armaan Dabhade has been creating gaming related content for the past year. The main game that he creates content on is “Call Of Duty,” and he has joined a content creation team called “19 Snipers,” which has gained over 10,000 followers on TikTok. 

“One of the best things about creating content is finding what you like doing on your own,” said Dabhade. “It is one of the best things, to find what’s comfortable and also explore new types of content to challenge yourself.” 

A major benefit of content creation is the community you build. People will gather in live streams or in comment sections to talk about their common interests. This could be about the content creator’s life or the work they produce. 

“The friends that I have made from creating content help me progress further into more possibilities and more growth within and outside the community,” said Dabhade.

But the desire to create video after video and to create content can be very mentally draining, especially if you keep posting videos that you think will do well, but end up flopping. That is when you have to go back to the drawing board and attack the video from a different angle. I have had videos get 40 views that I thought were going to go viral, and I have also had videos get in between 10,000-50,000 views that I thought were going to be just filler videos. 

Thinking of new video ideas and editing the videos can take up a lot of time. So student content creators have to be very good at managing their time to be able to post consistently and turn in their assignments efficiently.

 “My biggest struggle, at least right now, is just being creative. I feel like with being so involved on campus and taking so many creative classes, it takes away some of my drive and passion to create for myself and also for the organizations I’m part of like WMWC,” said junior English: Creative writing major Davy Washington.

For Charlie Li, a senior communication and digital studies major, it’s easy to access these platforms, but establishing a popular presence is difficult. 

“I would say that it is very easy to get into streaming on platforms like Twitch or YouTube, but is hard to master,” he said. 

A lot of up-and-coming content creators find it hard to know how to balance school life and creation. 

“One of the challenging things from balancing content and college is setting my priorities,” said Dabhade. “It is important to be consistent with content and the community you build up, but also it is very important to have a good education and attend classes on time.” 

Li advised student content creators on how to enforce a work-life balance while also managing content creation. 

“Knowing where your priorities lie and wanting to take yourself seriously in both aspects of streaming and academic work, is essential in understanding if it’s a hobby or a profession,” he said. 

Even though content and school can be very hard to manage, it is the passion and the determination to make it in the industry that keeps creators posting. 

“The self-growth I have achieved so far helps me push myself to break boundaries down. My friends always push me to make better content and teach new ways to adapt to new trends and ideas,” said Dabhade.