Ashland meme page gives students good laughs

By Glenn Battishill

Whether it’s about the Internet connection, Convo food or parking tickets, Ashland University students will always find something to joke about. When freshman commuter Breanna Kowal saw a friend post an image meme about their school, she thought it would be fun to create an AU centric meme page.

Memes are ideas of a usually humorous nature that populate and spread across the Internet. Some well-known memes range from Keyboard Cat, David after Dentist and the Double Rainbow Guy. Image macros such as Advice Dog have rose to prominence in recent years due to their ease of creation and understanding. When using image macros, text is placed at the top and bottom of a photo to convey a message or joke. 

Kowal created the group on Feb. 16 and it grew to over 60 members the first day.

“I’m kind of surprised that it got such positive feedback,” Kowal said. “I didn’t know there were this many other people interested in Internet memes.” 

The first meme posted was an image of Sean Bean from his performance in HBO’s “Game of Thrones,” simply saying, “Brace yourself, The Ashland University Memes are coming,” and in the first day over a dozen memes had been posted and commented on. 

Kowal explained that none of the memes are meant to be hurtful or derivative.

“There is no specific target,” Kowal said. “We are just poking fun.”

Junior Tim Hawk found the page soon after its conception and contributed a picture of President Finks in his office, overlaid with the text “I don’t always raise tuition, but when I do it’s a record low” in the style of “The most interesting man in the world” ads by Dos Equis.

Hawk said the Ashland meme page is a great outlet for students.

“The Ashland University Meme page gives students the opportunity to criticize their university in a fun and creative way,” Hawk said. “I post memes on the page because I want to make people laugh about things around campus but also to raise issues about the university.”

There are thousands of memes on the Internet and it can be alienating to people not familiar with the culture of the Internet. 

“The only problem with the meme page is that many students don’t understand certain memes or how to make them correctly with corresponding memes,” Hawk said. 

Several posts in the group have been critiqued for using memes in the wrong way or context, spawning memes about memes being misused.

“If you don’t understand memes, go to and read up on a few before you start to try and make them,” Hawk said. 

Memes on the page have spanned many memes and topics.

“I think students primarily use it for enjoyment and opportunity to take a crack at the university,” Hawk said. 

Hawk said the concept of a university centric meme page has become more and more popular, and many universities have spawned their own. Kowal remains excited about the page but worries about things getting out of hand.

“I’m a little nervous about the page just in case people really start bashing the school or someone else,” Kowal said. Kowal added that she hasn’t had to police any images yet but said she would delete them if the memes become hurtful. 

Kowal hopes more students post in the group and the number of images increase. 

“I just want people to make it relevant to Ashland,” Kowal said. “I don’t want people to target any specific people or professors. I don’t want people to get mean.”

There are over 250 people in the group and over 100 photos submitted. The meme page gives students an opportunity to laugh at some of the quirks of Ashland life in a positive way.

“It’s fun to use jokes that we all readily know to skewer and make light of our issues with Ashland University,” senior Cody White said. “It sure beats just complaining all the time. Plus, you get to see others that may not be your Facebook friends share their creative and not-so-creative side, all for our enjoyment.” 

White said he thinks the group creates a sense of unity amongst Ashland students.