Not everyone can say they quit their day job to sleep in their car on a nationwide road trip and live-stream the entire journey. Social media influencer, author and filmmaker Chris Strub did just that—and he made a documentary about it.
Strub visited Oklahoma Christian University on Tuesday, Oct. 15, to show the campus his documentary, “50 States, 100 Days,” which depicts his 2015 road trip around the country as he volunteered in a city in all 50 states over the course of 100 days. The event, titled “Using Social Media for Good,” also allowed Strub to discuss his experience as a social media influencer and instruct students on how they may impact others through social media.
Throughout his trip, Strub took to social media to document his experiences using Twitter, Snapchat and live-streaming apps like Periscope and Meerkat. He interviewed many of the individuals he met and shared stories about the people he worked with. His trip was met with media attention and gave him a platform to continue leading giving days, host service projects and travel the country to make a difference.
The event marked Strub’s 11th screening of the film. Strub emphasized the goal of his documentary was to inspire others to do great things and utilize resources like social media to have a positive impact.
“My hope with this project is not to [say] ‘Oh, look, I’m this guy who drove all around,” Strub said during his presentation. “My hope when you all leave this room today is that you feel better about the country you live in or that you feel inspired to do that thing you have always wanted to do.”
In addition, he encouraged students to pursue their passions and make a difference.
“Maybe there is something in your mind that makes you think, ‘I should do that,’” Strub said. Well, I did it. It may not be the best film you have ever seen, but it is done. I love the phrase, ‘Done is better than perfect.’”
Students, faculty and staff from Oklahoma Christian attended the event, in addition to students from local high schools.
Oklahoma Christian senior Hunter Wiederstein attended the screening and noted how Strub’s seemingly impossible road trip puts matters into perspective.
“[Strub’s presentation] made things which I thought were not possible a reality,” Wiederstein said. “I can practically see the steps he took to get there and the things he did to come out on the other side. It makes things visible and realistic to do something big in my mind that I would not have tried beforehand.”
Wiederstein also recognized the importance of Strub’s message of diversity and unity for Oklahoma Christian’s campus.
“From Strub’s trip to 50 different states in 100 days, he shows unity and bringing different perspectives together,” Wiederstein said. “I think on our campus there can be a lot of diversity, whether that is between classes, clubs or social background. Strub does a great illustration that the different parts of the country are not very different. I think if we get the chance to meet and grow closer to people, we will realize they are not as different as we think they are.”
Junior Maria Jones also attended and emphasized the impact of his social media use and how it affects how we use social media.
“I have a neutral presence on social media,” Jones said. “I do waste a lot of time on it. What today showed me was that I can be more proactive about how I spend my time on social media. I can engage in things which are actually helpful and relationship building.”