It’s been a year since The News published an article on Wellesley’s humorous and anonymous Instagram accounts. Since then, many new accounts have sprung up as the social media landscape at Wellesley College expands.
One such account, which has gained over 800 followers since its creation in Fall 2021, is @WellesleyWhisper. The creator of the account, who wished to remain anonymous, was inspired by other meme pages on Instagram.
“It’s a lot of scrolling through my Instagram feed, like my explore page, and also exploring stuff like Pinterest,” they said. “When something happens [on campus], I feel like that’s prime meme content.”
@WellesleyWhisper is just one of a number of meme accounts that have been created in the last year. @WellesleyAffirmations is a highly popular account as well, with over 1,600 followers as of the writing of this article. Additionally, @TheWellesleyBlues posts memes in many popular formats. Its bio reads, “Striving for mediocrity in humor and in life.”
“I went to boarding school, and I ran a similar account, so a lot of the same kind of jokes went around about the mundane troubles of living on campus and what it’s like to be in a college-like environment or an insular place during the pandemic,” Victoria Llanos ’25, creator of @TheWellesleyBlues, said. “I just wanted to make people smile, so I figured I could do the same thing here.”
Llanos is one of the only Wellesley Instagram managers who publicly shares her identity. Her personal account is linked in the @TheWellesleyBlues bio.
“I don’t know if people have bothered to check that,” Llanos said. “I don’t really care; I don’t mind either way if people know that I am running the account or not.”
Sometimes, too, people might find out the identity of someone running an Instagram account without the creator’s knowledge. The owner of @WellesleySoups, had originally created the account to document all the soups of the dining halls for their friends.
“But then it kind of skyrocketed,” they said. “I’ve had strangers come up to me, like, ‘Are you Wellesley Soups? Are you?’ I’m like, ‘Yeah, sure. I don’t know you or know how you know.”
They believe that word may have gotten out because people who eat lunch with them will see them taking pictures and videos of their soup. However, they preferred to remain anonymous for this article.
Most Wellesley Instagrams do remain fully anonymous, and at times, creators can even be self-conscious of this fact. @ElevatedMealsofWellesley began its journey when the creator was inspired by a personal attempt at manipulating a Tower Dining meal of fried rice and Korean steak with some pots and sauces at hand.
One of their current concerns is their positionality as a South Asian American using ingredients from various cuisines to improve meals. They worry that their audience may make assumptions about their identity and their experience with the ingredients.
“I don’t really want people to think I’m overstepping because I try to be really respectful of the way I’m using the food,” they said.
The creator of @ElevatedMealsofWellesley also shared that running the account has helped improve their mental health. Similarly, the creator of @WCovidLife, an account documenting the creator’s experience in COVID-19 isolation in December, added that running an Instagram account has helped make the pandemic experience less solitary. Particularly, the account helped clarify what COVID-19 isolation was actually like.
“From my experience, I knew people that had had COVID and were in Dower, but they didn’t really talk about it, or if they did, it was just a very private experience,” they said.
Though their isolation only lasted a couple of weeks, the account is still going. The account owner has posted other photos every so often, and recently, after a friend tested positive, they sourced new posts about the quarantine hotel from this friend.
In this time of isolation, accounts like these aim to spark joy. Another Instagram created just this year was @WellesleyPets, which, as the name might suggest, posts pictures of students’ pets. Its origin, however, was not quite as inspired by other accounts.
“I had a dream that I ran a Wellesley Instagram account and it was pet related,” the account’s owner said. “And I was like, oh my god, I need to create a Wellesley pet Instagram account.”
They started off posting multiple times a day, but now, the account is only active about once a week.
Overall, this new crop of Instagrams has brought a diverse range of content for Wellesley students to consume and share. Whether they are here to stay is another question — Llanos said she may grow tired of @TheWellesleyBlues and decide to stop posting, and @ElevatedMealsofWellesley commented that they may do a face reveal upon graduation.
For now, though, the content keeps on coming.
“You deserve to eat good food in the dining halls, so actually elevating them will make you feel better,” @ElevatedMealsofWellesley said. “Students here are all about change, so why not apply that to our food?”
Cheryl Wang contributed to the reporting of this article.