​Finding the Fun, Even in Difficult Times

September 24, 2020

The COVID-19 situation has brought with it many challenges in higher education. One prominent area – Student Life. Where we used to pack the Bowling Alley or the Roller Rink, we can no longer during these times. With challenge comes opportunity. Itasca Community College does not back down from a challenge, or an opportunity!

The Fall of 2020 will be a semester to remember. We will remember the way our community came together – even as we were forced to stand apart. We will remember the smiles in our eyes – as our mouths were hidden behind masks. We will remember how we flipped the script on Student Life.

The Student Life Department has truly reimagined campus activities. With a mixture of virtual activities and “socially-distanced” events, it has been a fun and exciting semester already. Events that have taken place include: virtual game night; drive-thru BBQ; virtual meditation sessions; drive-in movie; socially-distanced bike rides, kayak trips, and nature walks; a visit from the KONA Ice Truck; an outdoor ping pong tournament; a trap shooting event, and more. Events that are to come include: virtual caricature drawings, socially-distanced “Popcorn & Paint” night, virtual BINGO, trip to the Pumpkin Patch, trip to Mt. Itasca, virtual Family Feud game show night, DIY snow globe crafts, and more.

Student Life Director, Kayley Schoonmaker, talks about this shift: “I’m impressed at how resilient, understanding, patient, and FUN our students are. They just rolled with it. I was worried at first about turnout for these new events, however every event has been a success so far and it’s truly been one of the most fun semesters I’ve had. We will be doing some of these events for years to come.”

Second year student from Georgia, Jordan Huntington, has been on all of the bike rides so far. We asked Jordan his thoughts on this activity: “The bike rides were a nice exercise that I was able to do with my friends. It helped make things feel normal again.” Tia Tracy, a local PSEO student, has been to almost all the events this year and says: "I’ve been able to learn more about ICC, my classmates, make new friends, and make great memories. I’m grateful for the opportunities I’ve had to go to these events and I highly recommend going to any event that ICC hosts!"

We will persist. We will get through to the other side of this. And when we get there, we will have new and creative tools at our disposal. For more information on the Department of Student Life, including upcoming events, please visit the Student Life Webpage.

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