Southeast Missouri State University student publication

Southeast hosts first community learning week to increase student interaction

Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Southeast is hosting its first Community Learning Week to increase engagement between students in the themed and learning communities.

During the week of March 18 to 23, a series of activities such as a gaming event, cookie decorating and more will take place.

Area coordinator of Office of Residence Life Allie Wisker said these communities at Southeast are students that live together and take classes together in specific disciplines or topical areas.

“Students in themed and learning communities have lots of opportunities to interact and engage with each other, but they don’t always have a chance to meet with students who are taking part in other communities,” she said.

Wisker hopes this week will bring more engagement among members of the communities.

“The idea of this week came about when I was brainstorming new ways to get students in the various communities to interact,” she said.

A weeklong gaming event will be available for all students to interact virtually.

“We created a Discord Server [server specifically made for gaming] that will be open for all students to join,” she said. “This server will be open all week for students to meet up and play their favorite video games together.”

The event also included a paint night on March 19 at 7 p.m. in the University Center.

She said this event was limited to students who belong to one of the communities.

There was also cookie decorating on March 20 during common hour in the University Center.

March 21 from 5:30 to 8 p.m. at the University Farm there will be games, food and music.

“We will have a shuttle picking up students at LaFerla Hall, Dobbins River Campus Center and Vandiver Hall throughout the night; this is open to any student,” she said.

The final event will be March 23 and it is only open to themed and learning community students; they are going to Forest Park in St. Louis.

“Students will be able to go to the zoo, the art museum and the history museum,” she said.

Wisker said the specific ideas for the events came about through a lot of discussion with the three hall directors who work with the communities: Amanda Carpenter, Ben Cicotte and Caitlin Reicher.

“We hope students get a chance to interact with some people they have not interacted with before and students who may not have heard about our themed and learning communities before have a chance to hear about them,” she said.

Faculty and staff who are working with the communities are invited to take part in this week.

“This is another opportunity for faculty and students to engage with each other outside of the classroom,” she said.

Wisker said she would like to make this an annual event.

“We hope that students will have fun, get to relax after the stress of midterms and will get to meet new people throughout the week,” Wisker said.