By Melissa Colleary
The Office of Campus Life has big plans for the spring semester. “We’re not about maintaining the status quo. We’re not about maintaining programs that have been here year after year. If it’s a program that has been successful, we’re going to keep it, and we’re going to continue to make it better. I think that’s what we’ve been lacking: the new and innovative ideas that keep Campus Life looking fresh,” said Michael Berthel, Director of Campus Life.
Spring Fling Week is going to be built up, centering on Relay for Life and the Spring Concert. The week will take place in the third week of April, and the artist performing at the concert will be announced in the upcoming weeks. Campus Life also has plans to revitalize Pratt After Dark, a late night carnival in the Pratt Center that will take place on March 20. There are also two chapters being added to Greek Life – both Delta Zeta and Sigma Alpha Epsilon has agreed to come to Post in the spring.
A community service month is planned for the spring semester, but the dates have not yet been announced. Relay for Life, a walk to raise money for cancer research, will also return in the third week of March, and two community outreach trips are planned for the spring. There will be an alternative spring break in Costa Rica from March 8-13, which has already closed out with 12 students attending the service trip. There is also going to be an overnight trip to Washington D.C., where students will help to feed the homeless and work in soup kitchens. The trip is set to take place on Feb. 27-28. Information for the trip will be released soon, and is expected to be an affordable trip for interested students.
Campus Life works hard to create new events and activities each semester. During the Fall 2014 semester, Campus Life created Midnight Madness, a late night basketball game that had over 1,000 attendees and an overwhelmingly positive response from students. Additionally, Holidays in Hillwood were revitalized, moving the event to the evening and even adding an ice-skating rink in the Fishbowl.
Kristy O’Connell, a junior Marketing major, makes it a point to get involved in several activities across campus. O’Connell is a student ambassador and president of CHATS, an organization meant to help international students assimilate to being in a new country by pairing them with American students. “I go to all of my CHATS events! Karaoke is my favorite, but origami was awesome too. I like to go to all of the big events on campus like Holidays in Hillwood, Pratt After Dark, and this year I went to Midnight Madness. I try to make it to all the welcome events too, as well as any events my friends hold – like the Snow Ball.”
The Office of Campus Life is also involved in upgrades being made to the residence halls this semester. They brought in a new vending machine company, added coffee machines and Dippin’ Dots machines in all of the dorms and in academic buildings across campus last semester. They have worked to add flat screen televisions in the common rooms of all the dorms, and replaced old furniture in the study lounges to make them more inviting.
Perhaps the biggest improvement has been their effort to tackle the issue of broken machines in the laundry room that have long been a major complaint for residents. This semester, machines will be replaced and new services will be offered once the process of reviewing different laundry services is complete.
“I know Riggs just got a new TV for one of its lounges, along with the new furniture, and vending machines. There’s lots of those kinds of updates happening; we’re going for Res Halls for the 21st century. And really I love these changes; even the fresh coats of paint just make the buildings look better. Also, I know that Riggsians and everyone across campus can look forward to another Riggspocolypse,” said Ian Boswell, a senior Film major, who is a resident assistant in Riggs Hall. Last year, Riggspocolypse, a zombie themed relay race that took place on Oct. 27, was an immediate success. Over 40 students attended the event.
The Office of Campus Life is located in room 102 of Hillwood Commons. To find out more about all the activities and programs this semester, check out tinyurl.com/liupostcampuslife, or follow them on Twitter and Instagram @PostCampusLife and on Facebook at LIU Post Campus Life.