Let me explain…


Photograph by Garrett Carroll (via Unsplash)

You might remember a few months ago I wrote this post on why I take breaks from the blog, and the reasons as to why I have become disengaged with elements of blogging.

It has been over two months since that entry & it might be apparent from the lack of posts that my feeling on this topic are much the same. I know there are many people within the confines of the blogging/vlogging community – regardless of the subject of content they produce – who have very similar feelings to me.

Personally as a reader of many blogs, I’ve found myself consolidating what I read and spending more time going back to blogs where the content is really strong. I don’t have the patience to read posts that hold no originality or aren’t telling me something new.

Because I’ve been writing this blog for over 4 years, I feel a sense on obligation to explain where my feelings on blogging are right now & how that’s been effecting this blog.

I left University over a year ago, and I’ve been working at GPJ for just over 10 months. I’m not in the same environment as when I started this blog, and alongside the continuous learning, my priorities have changed.

The piece of information/knowledge below is the main reason I’ve made the decision to take a drastic look at this blog and my place within this area.

Content shouldn’t be produced for the sake of having content.

I believe that the value of content comes from saying something that needs to be said.

Creating content that will lead somewhere.

Content that is different, innovative and is not just repeating information others have said before.

Sure, I’ve been guilty of writing posts that are just duplicates of pieces I had written in the past. Posts that hold no value, all because I have been focused on putting up regular content at least once a week. However this becomes tiring, unfulfilling and quickly begins to feel like a chore.

That mentality means what is being produced doesn’t reflect what could be written.

I feel like the worst thing I could do is try to force ideas and posts. And I don’t want to write inadequate content, or worse make you read pointless posts.

Maybe now is the point to state quite boldly that I WILL CONTINUE TO WRITE THIS BLOG.

However I won’t be:

Writing on any set days

Posting weekly (or making any promises about when things might appear)

Apologising if there are long periods of time where nothing is uploaded

I want to be excited about sharing a piece of content. I also want the posts to add value. To be writing about topics that are interesting, that spark conversation and create a discussion.

But more than anything I want it to help students.

The other reason I’ve pushed blogging to the back seat, is because I’ve taken on some other responsibilities. I am a member of ISES UK, the International Special Events Society, and am sitting on the Education Committee. Which means I am still continuing to work with students but am getting to work with fantastic event professionals who have greater contacts, experience & understanding of how to help bridge the gap between what students get taught & what the industry is looking for!

I love writing this blog, it’s led me to some great places and giving me a platform I never thought I would have. But I don’t want to feel pressurised or overwhelmed about having to keep it updated.

Writing this blog is a hobby, separate from work, but something I do because more than anything I want to help make sure we continue to develop and enhance this industry.

And like a lot of things that starts with education!

So in summary:

I am still here, just won’t be pretending to stick to a schedule. Instead posts will appear sporadically when something interesting needs to be shared.

The content is going to be more focused, and more detailed. I want to start conversations (or at least make you think!)

But in true I’m a Damn Student style everything is still going to continue to focus on you guys, Event Management Students!


As always you can find me personally on Twitter @blogbykobrak & Instagram blogbykobrak – both of which are places I spend too much time!!

You can keep updated with the blog on both Twitter  @imdamnstudent & Facebook!

And if you are an Events Student – either about to start, currently at Uni, or just Graduated (Congratulations!) – I highly recommend joining #EventStudents Facebook Page & following @EventStudents1 (and the hashtag #EventStudents) on Twitter!


Event 360 Insight


Picture taken by ME (Caitlin Kobrak)

It’s been a 2 week window of inactivity on this blog, if you follow me on twitter (@blogbykobrak) you might have seen that I was away exploring the city of Rome for a few days. Unfortunately this is not a post with pretty pictures of amazing Italian food :( I don’t think that would be fair, and I was too busy stuffing my face with ALL the pizza/pasta to have time to snap an Instagram worthy picture.

Instead today I was to share a piece of insight I learnt at Tuesday’s Event Magazine and C&IT‘s Event360 at the Roundhouse.

Tim Dingle taught us a few simple rules of ‘How to be Amazing‘ – not something you would think could be explained in 10 minutes. Fundamentally it all comes down to breathing correctly, there is a whole science behind this concept that links into meditation, but apparently the one thing we should NOT be doing it taking deep breaths. Instead breathing slow, even and rhythmic is the correct way, it will release a certain chemical (the actual name escapes me) which allows you to get rid of any stresses and instead see clearly! There is a whole list of rules that Tim spoke about, which can be seen in the picture below!


Tim also said a great point that I think resonates with Event Students – ASK BETTER QUESTIONS. The thing I’ve learnt since Graduating last year is that no matter your job position you are continuously learning. We can all ask ‘does social media enhance the event experience’ but surely we are all clued in enough to know the answer is yes!? It links back to that overly shared, but very important, piece of advice to always be curious and willing to listen!

As a new event professional, & someone who has only been working in the industry for less than a year, I personally love attending these type of  events. Sometimes the content and discussions are on, or around, topics that you already know a lot about BUT you will always walk away having discovered something – even if it is knowing other people have the same viewpoints! In a way it fills the gap which was created once I finished University, I don’t think I appreciated or understood just how curious I am as a person!!

So in summary you can make yourself amazing & become the best person by taking 3 minutes out of your day, closing your eyes and breathing! Maybe it will help you through all your assignments next year , or if you’ve just finished your uni course, it might be a big help for when you start you graduate job!

You can follow Tim on twitter or check out his website, plus Event Magazine have you covered on all that was discussed at Event 360!


@imdamnstudent@blogbykobrakFacebook & Instagram


MND Association #LastSummer Advertising Campaign


This week on the tube I saw the above advert for MND Association campaign called #LastSummer – which harks back to the Ice Bucket Challenge that overtook our Facebook feed last year.

My first initial thoughts were on how fantastic it was to seen a charity understand and utilising the success of a previous campaign, they have focused on not only how the money is helping but the fact there is still a lot of work that needs to be done.

Now to highlight my support of their intelligent marketing strategy I tweeted the above tweet, something I do a regular basis to share interesting, thought-provoking & inspiring things that I find. But then I started getting a lot of people tweeting me about how this was a distasteful and misguided advert.

 “Last Summer I was the only person I knew who didn’t do the ice bucket challenge. Five months later I was diagnosed with motor neurone disease.”

The issue that people have is in regards to Michael’s advert, as some have interpreted the wording to mean that because Michael did not participate in the Ice Bucket Challenge that’s the reason he was diagnosed with Motor Neurone Disease.

Now before we got into a long debate lets first address the stupidity that anyone would think that could be true & more than that something a national charity whose focus is on MND care, research and campaigning would ever imply, BUT  I do understand that of all the quotes used this maybe wasn’t the best one.

I think if you are going to express an opinion on this campaign then I suggest you go and read Michael’s story to understand that both he & his wife Tracy are highlighting the simple fact that MND can affect anyone at any-point!

What I have found particularly interesting is the fact that this has caused a fair amount of tweets on social media, and whilst I can understand an element of dislike to the exact wordings this is not a campaign that is out to ridicule, hurt or shame anyone like Protein World’s Beach Body Ready ad.


Okay so the strap-line is not quite on the mark & that is something that MND Association will have to look at with their future marketing, but considering this is done by an organisation who are there to support people with MND is this really worth all the backlash?

Chris James, director of external affairs at MND Association, told Marketing magazine: “Our aim in the posters is to show how indiscriminate MND is and how it affects anyone of any age and across all communities, as well as reinforcing a couple of key messages about MND – that there is no cure and 50% of people die within two years of diagnosis.”

Personally I think it is great to see a marketing campaign that is maintaining the engagement created in the past, I understand why people have some issues with elements of the adverts but overall the fact this will continue to gain support and raise vital funds for research into MND I can overlook a few errors!

What do you think of the #LastSummer adverts? If you think the adverts are wrong, what do you think should happen next? 



@imdamnstudent@blogbykobrakFacebook & Instagram