Pictured above: [Left to right] Richard Mays, James Hand, and Alexis Tucker pose at the Spring Fling photo booth. | Photos by Katrina Erickson
Students are always eager to be done with midterms and relax on a beach the week before spring break.
This is where University Housing’s Spring Fling event comes in. It’s a luau-themed party. The event was held Wednesday, March 14 in the International Connections Lounge of the Union.
As soon as students entered, they were greeted with leis, sunglasses, and a passport to take around the booths.
At each of the tables, the passports were stamped after talking to representatives from campus resources. Campus representatives included University Police, Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS), No Woman Left Behind, Pat Walker Health Center and University Conduct and Substance Education and Alcohol Resources (SEAR).
After visiting every booth and getting a stamp on their passport, students were entered to win prizes like an Echo Dot and Oakley sunglasses.
SEAR is an organization under the Pat Walker Health Center that aims to educate and empower students to make informed decisions regarding substance use.
At the table, students played a wooden-block balancing game and beach-pong while wearing goggles that simulate vision while inebriated.
“What happens on spring break doesn’t stay on spring break, it follows you back to campus,” said Asher Morgan, substance abuse prevention coordinator at the Pat Walker Health Center.
When asked why spring break alcohol consumption is dangerous, Morgan answered “On spring break, people drink all day, hydrate less, and spend time on the beach, which further dehydrates them. This can lead to alcohol poisoning which is very dangerous.”
She told students that poor decisions on spring break can impact their academic lives and even lead to the conduct office contacting them.
At the Conduct table, Holcombe Hall resident Nick Lange learned about how the university handles alcohol cases.
The Office of Student Standards is the body that intervenes when student behavior is disruptive to the university community. They promote personal responsibility and peer accountability.
Conduct officer Greg Foster said, about 6 percent of Arkansas students interact with the office sometime in their undergraduate career, and most of them learn from their mistakes after their first offense.
Lange was surprised to learn that the Conduct office usually issues sanctions for most alcohol cases on campus rather than university police.
When asked what he learned at the Spring Fling event, Lange answered “I learned that is very important to use self-control when consuming alcohol. People go on spring break wanting to unwind from the stress of school, but they go overboard, and alcohol negatively affects their judgements.”
It was a fun event that taught students about the importance of alcohol safety and allowed them to destress during midterms.
Spring Fling is part of University Housing’s @Home series. The @Home series consists of several signature events during the 2017-18 academic year that focus on promoting academic success, personal development and diversity education.