Housing’s Semi-Annual Block Party Welcomes New Students



Madison Watkins, Staff Writer

block party
Armstrong students Collin Owen, Kaelyn Pettus, and James Schockley crack a smile during Housing’s Semi-Annual Block Party. (Mitchell McDuffie)

Armstrong’s Housing Department held its semi-annual Block Party on the brick pathway between Windward Commons and Compass Point on August 19.

The Housing Department holds this event at the beginning of the fall and spring semester to engage new and returning students and encourage proactivity in on campus.

The company Fun Times that offers attractions at many events on campus throughout the year provided this year’s amenities as well. Many of the different organizations and clubs on campus set up tables to engage with the students and give them information on what they are about.

This year the Block Party coincided with the Meet the Greeks event where students can meet the representatives of the different fraternities and sororities on campus. The Meet the Greeks event had representatives from the Alpha Sigma Tau, Delta Sigma Theta, Tri Sigma sororities and the Kappa Sigma and Pi Kappa Alpha fraternities this year, and started earlier in the afternoon with the Block Party following afterwards.

Multiple student organizations and clubs handed out flyers, food and water bottles in aims to self-promote and to accommodate for the sweltering Savannah weather.

Among the many student organizations, there were ministry groups: the Baptist Collegiate Ministry (BCM) and the SEEK Catholic Campus Ministry, the Recreation and Wellness Center and research groups: Terrapin Educational Research Program of Savannah (TERPS) and clubs such as the Armstrong Pre-Pharmacy Club, the Gay-Straight Alliance (GSA) and Go Green Armstrong.

We stood in at a couple of tables. To get an interview with club representatives. One such table featured the TERPS group. The goal for the TERPS group is to raise awareness for the Terrapin Turtles that are commonly found in this area around this time of year when they are nesting and are commonly in danger of being run over. The place where they are most at risk is on Highway 80 that leads to Tybee Island.

“If we find an abandoned nest we will bring the eggs back to campus and put them in an incubator until they are ready to hatch. Once they hatch we take care of the turtles until they are ready to be released back into the wild… we always get a good amount of people interested in the program at events like these who start regularly attending the meetings” explained Chelsie Miles, research student for TERPS.

Another table featured BCM where Campus Minister Tony Branham welcomed students and facilitated outreach. “These events are very beneficial. They are definitely worthwhile and always bring in people. We were able to get a lot of students’ emails today so we can keep them up to date on our events,” Branham said.

Many students enjoyed what the Block Party had to offer. Here are some remarks by attendees at the event. “My third semester [living on campus] is going very well. I like all of my roommates that I’m living with and the rooms in Compass Point are very nice and comfortable,” Sophomore mechanical engineering major Austin Webb said.

Housing director Nick Shrader and assistant director Katie Fester were delighted that the students were enjoying themselves.

“These events are about giving the students an opportunity to engage with others and see what the campus has to offer,” Shrader said. “The Block Party is a big community builder. It really helps all of the organizations reach out to students and the residential students in particular.” Fester elaborated.

They mentioned having student enjoyment in mind organizing the Block Party, and every year when they try refine the event by bringing back popular attractions and orchestrating new activities.

The Housing Department will be organizing more on-campus events in the upcoming months, more details will be available as the dates approach.