Students Bond While Having Blast

Rachel Janzen, right, a residence hall director and assistant womens basketball coach, deals to students playing blackjack during Casino Night.

Rachel Janzen, right, a residence hall director and assistant women’s basketball coach, deals to students playing blackjack during Casino Night.

Anna Mammedova, Features Editor

On Aug. 18, Allen Community College opened its doors for the fall semester and started refreshing the campus with new and returning students. The life within the college has rapidly turned on as Allen staff members, particularly those involved with student life, made the first week for students quite exhilarating.

“Welcome Back” week, or as it’s more commonly known, “Activity Week,” was Aug. 21-26 and resulted in the various kick-off parties for youngsters. The events included movie night, bowling, games, a casino and a dance. The purpose of the activities was to gather freshman and sophomores together, giving them a chance to get to know each other outside of the classrooms. The organization of the activities was on the shoulders of Allen Director of Student Life Ryan Bilderback.

“Organizing those activities, we intended to make the campus as homey and friendly for students as possible,” Bilderback said. He added that for a lot of students, Allen is the first place that time is spent away from home, so the chance to meet new people and make friends is vitally important.

From his view, the most successful idea this year happened to be the Dance Night and Hook Up meeting. While Dance Night was for recreation, Hook Up carried more informative purpose, where students were told about proper behavior in campus housing and generally about campus.

Bilderback plans to hold such activities throughout the semester and encourages students to come up with ideas for their leisure time.

From some students’ point of view, the most memorable experience was Casino Night. Miguel Roberts, freshman from Topeka, said, “I met most of my friends during this evening as well as enjoyed playing poker.” he said. Miguel believes “Activity Week” strongly helped him to bond with the guys from his dorm and adjust easier to the new environment.

Another freshman, Peyton Suter of Burlington, shared that she and her roommate had a blast during the game night, where they got to know people with whom they shared classes. She supported having these events throughout the year and even expressed a willingness to share some ideas for activities from her high school experience.

While the primary goal of college life is to chase the academic quest, students believe that campus activities outside of the classroom positively influence their adjustment to student life.

Helping them to bond with one another, the weeks like “Welcome Back” definitely impacts their college experience.