By Tameka Shockley
Of all the advice I have given to students while attending school here at Delaware State University, one of my favorite gems to offer is simply to “Go to programs.” It’s a simple task that cannot be stressed enough. When you attend programs, that’s where you meet new people and learn new things and, most of all, get the most out of your student experience.
I attest to this first hand as I have met my “tribe” of friends here by going out of my comfort zone and saying hello while in a room full of people I don’t know, and broadening the types of places I would normally go. And the goal is to not stop there, but to keep branching out and widening your circle even when you think you have it made.
This past week I attended programs that were so rejuvenating, inspiring and full of life. They probably wouldn’t have been as profound, if I lived on campus – as such events happen regularly, but I live in the courtyard apartments.
The first program was a movie screening and panel discussion of “Unsolved: The Murders of Tupac and the Notorious B.I.G.” in the EH Theater. There we watched the pilot episode of the ten-part series and listened to an insightful panel discussion involving journalist Thembisa Mshaka, last known writer to interview “Biggie” before his death; Grouchy Greg, owner of Allhiphop.com and Collegehiphop.com; Adjunct professor, Charlissa Edelin. The panel discussion was moderated by DSU’s Dean of the College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences, Dr. Francine Edwards.
The event was enriching and insightful and caused a lot of thought provoking conversation.
The second program was a motivational speech by alumna, India Sage, and the organization – “The Go-Getters Club.” The engaging Ms. Sage explained how to build a successful brand to the student attendees . She spoke of her personal testaments as well as her three key objectives to building a personal brand which are:
1: Believing in yourself
2. Risking it all
3. Focusing on your goals and what is important.
As fulfilling and amazing as these two events were, I couldn’t help but to think to myself why the house wasn’t packed? Why were there empty chairs in the room? Why don’t students attend programs on campus?
I couldn’t help but to wonder how I ended up at two phenomenally under- attended events. There are so many things going on throughout the weekdays and week nights on campus for students to explore and enjoy and yet nobody is coming out.
I have come up with three solutions to the problem.
- Professors should promote these events by possibly giving extra credit points for attending events throughout the week. Especially seminar professors, who could use this opportunity to have students write about what they witnessed those days and nights.
- Use the big brothers and big sisters program on campus to have students take their mentees to more events
- Allow teachers to put school programs and events in place of classes as long as they are relative.
I hope that students take this opportunity now to look at these program flyers twice and go out and attend and see what else there is to do on campus. You never know what you might learn, what you might be getting involved in,or who you might see.