Jenna Marbles Rolls Through to ASUCI Speaker Event

Jack Yu | New University

Jack Yu | New University

 

Over 460 students filled the Pacific Ballroom in Student Center last Thursday night to attend a Q&A discussion with YouTube comedian Jenna Mourey, more popularly known as Jenna Marbles.

Organized by the Speakers & Debate commission of ASUCI’s Office of Academic Affairs, the event originally had 260 seats available for students. After filling all the seats and receiving numerous requests to obtain a larger room, ASUCI reserved the ballroom and opened up 200 more spots –– the event sold out in two minutes. ASUCI also selected 40 students to stay after the discussion for a meet-and-greet with Jenna.

“We were interested in bringing Jenna because of the large YouTube culture at UCI, and because Jenna is the #1 most subscribed woman on YouTube, which is a largely male-dominated media form,” said Academic Affairs Vice President Nikki Kathuria.

The hour-long discussion included questions from the audience revolving around Jenna’s life as a famous YouTuber, such as “where would you be if you weren’t a YouTube star?” and “what was your weirdest experience with a fan?”

Jenna Marbles has over 14 million subscribers and her comedy video “How To Trick People Into Thinking You’re Good Looking” had over 5.3 million views in its first week –– it now has over 60 million views. Her videos usually have Jenna sitting in front of the camera, ranting about issues from “People That Deserve a Raise” to “Things Boys Don’t Understand.”

Jenna films, edits and posts her videos independently from home and you can always count on guest appearances from Jenna’s various dogs in every video –– she’s a notorious dog-lover and her pseudonym comes from her chihuahua, Mr. Marbles.

“My life has changed dramatically –– I worked at a tanning salon, I was a go-go dancer… it was a dark time,” Jenna joked during the discussion. “But I wasn’t a stripper, you guys!”

Originally from upstate New York, Jenna moved to Boston, where she received her bachelor’s degree in psychology from Suffolk University before going on to earn a master’s degree in sports psychology and counseling from Boston University. She worked a series of odd jobs before rising to Internet fame and then moved to Los Angeles to pursue her YouTube career.

Along with more comical questions relating to Jenna’s videos and her dogs –– “what should I name my new puppy?” –– several students also asked Jenna about her educational background.

“Well, you learn how to human really good,” Jenna laughed, but she also stressed the importance of achieving a higher education and stated she finds herself applying her background in psychology to everyday occurrences in her life. If YouTube didn’t exist, Jenna said she’d probably be a teacher or doing anything involving working with children, “because we’re at the same maturity level.”

At one point during the discussion, a selfie photo-op turned into a disruption when dozens of students began running up to the stage to get personal photos with Jenna. ASUCI repeatedly asked for students to return to their seats, but Jenna laughed and continued to take photos with the remaining students.

“Having human interactions –– like this, I live for this –– is so great,” Jenna said about the perks of her fame. “People say the nicest things to me; things my parents don’t even say to me.”