Many Francis Marion University students flocked to the Smith University Center on Wednesday, April 4 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. to celebrate the end of the semester and the beginning of spring.
Each semester, the University Programming Board (UPB) holds a festival of free activities for all FMU students. This is a common occurrence on many college campuses, and Assistant Dean of Students LaTasha Brand felt like it was an important event to bring to the FMU campus.
“I think it’s an opportunity for our students to have that one afternoon and that one event that allows them to have a few hours to not think about anything they have academically and be able to socialize,” Brand said.
To get into Spring Fest, students needed only to show their FMU ID which allowed the students to get a plate for food and for the UPB to get an estimate on how many students actually attended.
From there, students could start by playing video games on one of four big screen projectors set on the left wall of the UC. Each projector had its own video game console and featured games such as Dance Central for Kinect, Rock Band, Call of Duty and Super Mario Smash Brothers Brawl.
If students wanted something more physically challenging, they could head to the gym where there were several blow-up inflatables. These inflatables included blow-up boxing rings where students could battle each other with giant, blow-up boxing gloves.
In the middle of the UC, several tables were set up for the students to relax at and enjoy the hotdogs, ham-burgers, chips, cookies and a variety of Italian Ice.
Brand also wanted to include something that gave the students something to take away with them from the fest and also use to remember the event. These activities included a booth where students could either make a personalized keychain with their picture on it, or another booth where they could record a CD of them singing along to any number of popular songs.
Several students said they did not even know FMU had something like Spring Fest until they heard classmates talking about it or asked students that they saw walking around campus with Italian ice.
Donovan Biggs, a senior majoring in computer science, said he enjoyed Spring Fest.
“I enjoyed having an all-expense paid break from the stress of classes,” Biggs said. “It was also a lot of fun to wrestle my friends in the blow-up boxing ring.”
Brand said that UPB chooses the activities for each future fests based on students’ feedback from previous fests. For next year, Brand said that she will continue to bring back the old favorites, but she is also working on bringing in some new activities for the students as well.
Though Brand was secretive about what the activities were, she promised it was something she thought all the students would really enjoy.