IU students make Welcome Week a fun and educational event

As a resident assistant at the McNutt Quadrangle Residence Hall, Eleanor Broyles helps create a safe, fun and welcoming environment for Indiana University students.

eleanor broyles

Eleanor Broyles, second on the left, worked with IU’s GLBT Student Support Services Office during last year’s CultureFest. | Photo provided by Eleanor Broyles

Throughout the school year, the junior studying recreational sport management makes sure her residents are making the most out of campus. That is especially true during Welcome Week – a week full of activities to welcome new and returning students to campus.

“As a student, I’m really passionate about making this place my home, and a home for my fellow students,” she said. “Part of my definition of home is a place I feel really safe and 100 percent myself. So these activities help me share that idea with others. … I want to make sure this is a safe place for everyone.”

IU’s Welcome Week 2016 kicked off today with the Freshman Induction ceremony and dorm floor meetings. The celebration continues through Saturday with CultureFest, open houses, a part-time job fair, Traditions and Spirit of IU, IMU Late Nite, New Student Service Day and the Welcome Week Block Party concert and carnival.

In the past, Broyles has participated in RecFest, which gives students a chance to try out hundreds of programs and activities offered through Rec Sports, and CultureFest, which highlights IU’s cultural programs. This year, she will be participating in IMU Late Nite’s Amazing Race taking place Aug. 18 at Dunn Meadow.

Although not new to campus, Broyles said she still finds Welcome Week fun and exciting.

welcome week

Freshmen dance during the “Herman B House Party” during last year’s Welcome Week. Photo by IU Communications

“I love stuff like this,” she said. “I love getting out and meeting new people and interacting with everyone. Getting the chance to see and meet different people is always cool to me.”

Throughout this week, students have the opportunity to meet new friends and reconnect with old friends, all while learning about all of the programs and activities IU has to offer.

Although aimed at having fun, the events also teach students about IU’s commitment to creating a safe environment.

“It is important for Indiana University to tell current and new students about our values to create a safe and healthy campus for all,” said Lori Reesor, vice provost for student affairs and dean of students. “One successful way we do that is through our students, a majority of which lead healthy lives and want to work together to create a safe and inclusive campus.”

One of those events, the annual Sex, Drugs and Rock ‘n’ Roll at Showalter Plaza, features campus organizations that are directly involved in student wellness.

Graduate student Emmalee Fishburn is helping organize the event, which is hosted by the IU Health Center, Sexual Assault Crisis Service and IU’s Counseling and Psychological Services. In addition to the annual event, a smaller, similar event will be held for athletics this year.

culture of care

IU’s Culture of Care will participate in this year’s Sex, Drugs and Rock ‘n Roll event.

“I’m excited to see the thousands of students that will come through,” said Fishburn, a Master of Public Health student. “It’s a good opportunity for students to be aware of things they may face or experience as an undergraduate and to educate themselves early on prevention and resources offered by IU.”

As an intern for Sexual Assault Crisis Service and a graduate assistant for IU’s Culture of Care/Bystander Intervention Program, Fishburn has spent her time as a graduate student working with students on health and safety issues.

“The biggest thing for students to know is there are a lot of resources on campus to provide for general health and well-being,” she said. “It is important for events like this to happen and for students to be aware of them and to participate in them and to know that IU cares. We are here for the students.”

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