Lack of weekend events sends students home

By KeAndre Worthy

A lack of weekend events may send students home.

MAP-Works survey results show 43 percent of freshmen or transfer students reported dealing with some form of homesickness. Randi Napientek, assistant director of the Office of Student Academic Success, said this statistic isn’t far off from last year’s results and is not unusual. The survey was taken from week four to week six. The MAP-Works survey population was 70.83 percent freshmen and 35.87 percent transfer students, Napientek said.

Napientek said homesickness could come from students not engaging in campus events, which can lead to them going home frequently over the weekends.

“It’s tough for us. I don’t think it is so much of a case of a suitcase campus from homesickness, more the students have nothing to do on weekends,” said James Zanayed, Student Association Senate speaker.

To keep students in DeKalb and get them engaged, the SA and other organizations have hosted events. Zanayed said the SA provides free food at home games, and the organization plans to have more weekend events.

“I have gone home around five times this semester over the weekends,” said freshman chemistry major Joseph Kuhlmey. “[It’s] just easier to get work done. Also, I really don’t know when some of the weekend events are….”

Napientek said colleges, special populations, housing staff, advisers and others on campus have access to the aggregate data in MAP-Works. This allows them to do their own special programs for their specific populations.

“Some possibilities we could be working with is more concerts at the Convo,” Zanayed said. “[It] doesn’t have to be an event like Homecoming — [it] could be as simple as getting speakers over the weekend so students will stay.”

Saturday, the Office of Student Academic Success launched the Fall Check-Up Survey. This survey is shorter and is meant to test how students are doing as they near the end of the semester. The survey is open through Nov. 18. A link to the survey was sent to students’ emails.