Get with the program

On a campus of nearly 17,000 students, only 3,145 live in the on-campus Residence Halls. Many of those complain of boredom and mediocrity, then hang out off campus, and get their excitement in the form of DUIs, MIPs, and nights in jail. What do the Resident Advisors have to say to these students? Get with the program.

Programming consists of all the fun, informative, social events that the RAs of the residence halls on campus put on for their residents.

“The purpose of programming is to strengthen educational and social development for students in the residence halls,” said Katy Pelton, Residence Area Coordinator for the Department of Residence Life.

Programming is a safe and exciting way for the hall to build its community, and for people to get to know each other the best way they can: by having fun together.

Programs can have a wide variety of subjects, such as Estill Hall’s “Powderpuff,” where the RAs taught the girls of the hall the basics of football, and then attended a Bearkat game together after some free food, or even Sam Houston Village’s “Condom Olympics”, where students were educated of the dangers of sexually transmitted infections and proper condom use. Residents raced to see who could put a condom on a banana the fastest, and whose condom balloon could fly the farthest.

On Sorority Hill, an officer came out to teach everyone some basic self-defense moves for their “Learn to Fight Back” program. And that’s just a small example of the many fun events all over campus.

“Attendance for the programs keeps going up. We’ve had about 30 people at most events, and as many as 110 at White Hall’s ‘Backyard Bash,'” said Ms. Pelton, “and those numbers just keep going up as the halls fill up.”

These events were held in the first six weeks of school, but October has even more programs in store.

On Oct. 7, White Hall will decorate its lobby like a 1920s speakeasy and play the card game “Mafia”. Oct. 13 plays host to Belvin’s “No Boys Allowed” featuring a girl’s night focusing on Women’s Health, and Jackson-Shaver will be having a Field Day at Pritchett field teaching the basics of five popular sports on the same day. Late October will be having four Halloween programs all over campus, with King Hall’s “Safe Trick-or-Treating” and Raven Village’s huge “Fall Festival.”

Programs are not only for those that live in the halls. As long as you are not disruptive, anyone is welcome to attend. Just look for publicity around the halls, it can get pretty creative, like Sam Houston Village’s giant-size board game spaces leading to the lobby for “Are You Smarter Than A 2-Year-Old”. They’re always overflowing with free food, prizes, and information, so it never hurts to stop by for a pamphlet and a snack or two.

So if you find your on-campus friends complaining again, just seek out an RA and ask them to point you in the direction of the nearest program. Chances are it will be closer than you think, and who knows? Maybe you’ll even enjoy yourself while learning something.

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