Universities are getting creative with virtual offerings. And we want to highlight them! Check out these “Virtual Program Highlights” from Southern New Hampshire University (SNHU) and Louisiana State University (LSU).
The Campus Recreation team at SNHU collaborated with campus partners and other online resources to produce Recreate Virtually, a resource page to help the campus community stay active, social and at peace while also practicing social distancing.
The three main categories for Recreate Virtually include:
“Over the last three weeks, recreation professionals have been sharing programs and ideas to their campuses and colleagues non-stop,” said Andrew Doyle, the coordinator of Recreation at SNHU. “We couldn’t have created the resource guide we have if colleagues weren’t so willing to help others out in times like these.”
Doyle elaborated one of the most popular programs right now is intramural esports. Because they collaborated with the varsity esports program and other key partners, they were able to quickly start offering competitive tournaments and drop-in games.
Additionally, seeing students, staff and vendors come together to share resources is something Doyle and his team are thankful for during this time. “Matrix Fitness has been a huge resource for us in helping update our facility, and they just came out with their Matrix Community app,” he said. “We’re hoping apps like these will help give some normalcy in these uncertain times and help [the community] feel connected to the space and programs we offer when they are on campus.”
While brainstorming creative ways to keep students engaged, LSU UREC came up with the idea to incorporate what they had been doing to entertain themselves and thought it would be fun to see what everyone else was watching. The name “Binge Worthy Tournament” was then developed by the marketing team.
There are four different brackets: Netflix, Hulu, HBO and Disney+. Using the “poll” option on Twitter, staff post TV shows for participants to vote on. At the conclusion of the four brackets, staff will match all the winners up in the Final Four bracket to determine the most binge worthy show.
An additional offering that is showing success right now for LSU UREC is the Tiger Fit Mileage Challenge. Participants track mileage for either running, jogging, walking or biking, and then submit the miles to UREC for the whole month of April.
“We have three different tiers of prizes they can earn from reaching mileage goals, 30/60/90 for running, walking and jogging, or 60/120/180 for biking,” said Chris Morriss, the assistant director of sport and camp programs at LSU UREC. “People have really been loving it and submitting miles like crazy.”
When brainstorming fresh ideas, Morriss elaborated there’s no need to recreate the wheel. Instead, he suggested looking at what others are doing and tweak ideas to fit your own programs. “If you come up with something unique and awesome, share it,” he said. “We are all trying our best to provide great opportunities to students, and sharing our ideas is how we can help each other during this tough time.”