Bright Futura is an online college newspaper, blog and video-based community. As stated on its website, Bright Futura is powered by students, for students.

Founded by George Mason University biology major Max Garland approximately four and half months ago, Bright Futura is an interactive blog-style site full of articles on current events, music suggestions, memes, jokes, advice on navigating through college life and much more.

Tell me about yourself, and how you came up with this project.

MG: I attend George Mason and I study pre-med, and through the course of going through all of the in’s and out’s of college, I found that advisers weren’t very helpful. But I didn’t find much that could be told on how to get through college, other than books written by adults. So I looked at websites that could do so, but there really wasn’t one. So I decided to make a relevant and not-so-relevant hybrid of fun and serious college life online.

When did you start Bright Futura?

MG: I started this in fall of 2011. I launched into a practice version of it on tumblr. I saw that people were interested, but I had never built a website before, so I took some time to learn HTML and got it together and running.

How many people are active writers on this site?

MG: I currently have six writers, [including] three students from George Mason and one graduate student from Mason. We also have a high school student who is writing from the perspective on how to get into college. We have both genders represented in our staff and it’s pretty diverse in terms of perspective. And, hopefully, it will continue to grow.

Is Bright Futura a Mason-based thing?

MG: I am intending for it to be a centerpiece of college life.

How does this site fit with your pre-med interest? Is this a completely different part of your personality?

MG: My personality allows for multiple facets of creative outlets.  When I was studying pre-med, that creative outlet wasn’t there for me. So I thought this would be a viable thing I can do.

When you’re at Mason, sometimes you have good advisers, sometimes you don’t. I sought out mentors and I was able to learn a lot. For students who don’t have time, it would be nice to learn vicariously from someone else.

Is this site like a newspaper to you?

MG: For me, it is more interactive than a newspaper. When I think of newspapers, I think it’s going to be passing away in the coming years just because it’s not interactive. News that happens in the beginning of the day you miss out on because it has to be printed. When something is online, it’s syndicated quicker.

Do you write for the site?

MG: Yes, I write a lot of it. I’ve begun to realize that content is king. It’s not just how quickly you can put out a piece. It has to be something people are really going to learn from. There’s a lot of humor in the pieces, so it’s fun for everyone to read, but it also has to have an underlying message. The current piece I’m working on is “How to Pay Off Your Student Loans.”

I would like to read that! What are you goals for Bright Futura?

MG: We have only been out for about four and a half months. We’ve gone from getting 15 views from my friends, to getting to — the best day we’ve had so far is about 700 unique visitors on the site. My goal for the next two months would be to get a thousand visitors in one day. My overall goal is to create a centerpiece for college students, so they have a real way of creating a community with other students and learning from their mistakes so they can go further.

Are you happy with the progress of the site so far?

MG: Yeah, but I’m a perfectionist. I definitely think there’s more that can be done. However, I am extremely pleased with the work my writers are doing. People really enjoy some of the stuff that they read. I wouldn’t want to say I’m not pleased with the site, but I do have high expectations.

So why should people go to your site and get involved?

MG: “Relax and take notes” is sort of the tagline I’ve considered for Bright Futura. People can come and get an enjoyable experience but at the same time learn from us.

How do you plan to market the site so more people can hear about it?

MG: I think the best way to market the website is for people to share it. Because if people like it, they show their friends. There is nothing more original than organic sharing. I think the best way to get people to come is to find out what people like, and give them what they like.