After classes end on Thursday afternoons, it is almost guaranteed to find a good parking spot in the resident lot to start the weekend. Fewer students are roaming around campus and it’s easier to find a table for four at the dining hall during the usual busy hours.
What makes a student want to stay on campus during their off days? Is it boredom or home sickness that drives students to leave?
Rider is not the epitome of a suitcase school, but from someone who stays on the Lawrenceville campus every weekend, Saturdays and Sundays are clearly more desolate than other days of the week. Many Rider students live within an hour radius of campus, which could be a reason why we see students straying away when not in classes.
You only go through college once, and I believe that these four years are the most gratifying and fortunate ones of our young lives — and yes, they go by faster than you think. College is what you make it and that really is true. The more you are involved, aside from academics, most likely goes along with how much extra time you spend on campus, including the weekends.
Rider definitely has a lot to offer during each semester. In the fall, we kick off the school year with traditions like I Love College, Cranberry Fest, the Fall Concert and now the Homecoming events. In the spring, everything slows down a bit in the colder months with the big semester event being the annual ArtBeast festival. Smaller events take place this semester such as the Drag Race, Rider Rhymes, comedians and other selective shows. So much hype is built up at the beginning of the school year that the rest of the year seems to be overlooked to keep students entertained.
There are smaller events throughout the semester that probably take up much of the university budget, instead of just having two large events to get the campus chattering with excitement.
Through a Rider News Facebook poll, 70 percent of the voters said that Rider does not hold enough events on the weekends to entice students to stay. A viable solution to this problem could be spreading out big festivals and concerts throughout the year to keep students interested.
Senior class president Gabriella Pasquini said, “To get the full college experience here, students must be involved, and all it takes is joining one club, attending pub nights and checking your email for Weekend Warrior updates sent out every week with a full list of activities for students.”
Pasquini isn’t a fan of hearing people say there is nothing to do on the weekends here because the Student Government Association and Student Entertainment Council try their hardest to make sure students are happily occupied at all times during the semester.
Something else students may look over is the amount of school spirit found at our home sports games. School spirit is a huge part of enjoying the full college experience, and staying for a rowdy Friday night basketball or hockey game does just that. Games are free for students and are a great way to keep up on Rider’s culture.
Aside from sports and events, Rider’s fine arts department and student-run organizations put on multiple musicals, cabarets, dance shows and theater performances for the student body to enjoy. The BLC and Yvonne Theater stages create affordable broadway stages for students to be entertained by their classmates.
A Rider News Twitter poll revealed that 63 percent of the voters would stay on campus if Rider held more concerts and festivals throughout the year, and 37 percent said they would remain on campus if there were more events like I Love College.
Some Rider students immediately put the blame on the university for the supposed absence of events, but it is the lack of student attention that might fix the problem. If students weren’t so quick to automatically delete emails and actually read the hundreds of flyers for events around campus, they would be surprised with how busy they could be while staying the weekends and enjoying their college experience.
The weekly editorial expresses the majority opinion of The Rider News. This week’s editorial was written by the opinion editor, Hayley Fahey.
Printed in the 2/7/18 issue.