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The Tufts Daily
Where you read it first | Sunday, May 26, 2024

Resources fair connects students to on-campus academic, safety, identity resources

The Student Resources Fair is pictured at the Joyce Cummings Center on April 6.

The Tufts Community Union Senate Education Committee held a resources fair on April 6 to educate students about the resources and organizations available to help them with academic work, keep them safe and enhance student life on campus

The fair, which was moved indoors from the roof of Tisch Library to the Joyce Cummings Center due to rain, featured 40 tables with organization representatives on hand, food trucks serving popcorn, hot pretzels, ice cream and an assortment of games, music and prizes. A wide variety of groups, from safety-focused organizations like Green Dot and Action for Sexual Assault Prevention to academic resources like the StAAR Center to student identity organizations including the Asian American, Latinx and LGBT centers, were on hand to inform students of their work on campus.

The event was conceptualized during a meeting of the TCU Education Committee and inspired by a discussion with the Center for STEM Diversity.

“This conversation led us to a discussion on what demographics at campus may not be aware of or utilizing campus resources, and how generally students seem unaware of what resources are available to them,”Education Committee Chair Claire Bolash told the Daily in an email.

Bolash explained the COVID-19 pandemic has been detrimental to students’ awareness of campus resources.

“With the pandemic, a lot of resources that are offered had to be halted or modified because students/faculty were not on campus and then much of campus life was virtual,” she wrote.

Despite the last-minute location change, students showed interest in learning more about resources available to them.

There was a good turnout and a really lively atmosphere,” Amanda Wright, interim program coordinator of Tufts Global Education, wrote in an email to the Daily.

After two years of disruptions to study abroad and international travel, we wanted to make sure students know that our office has been working hard this year to support students,” Wright added.

Shanley Daly, events coordinator at the Tisch College of Civic Life, was glad for the chance to interact with students face to face at the fair.

“Tisch College serves and supports all students at Tufts,” Daly wrote in an email to the Daily. “The resource fair was a great opportunity to meet many students—in person—and to share our programs and event opportunities with them.”

Wright also emphasized the importance of communicating with students studying abroad about their semester abroad.

Alexandra Donovan, director of the Center for Awareness, Resources, and Education, which includes Green Dot and Sex Health Reps, also spoke positively of the event. Donovan shared her gratitude for the chance to represent CARE’s work to the broader Tufts community.

Outside of orientation or Student Org Fair, there are few opportunities to represent our office in larger community events,'' she wrote in an email to the Daily, lamenting the poor weather that brought the event indoors and lowered attendance.

Donovan emphasized that CARE is available as a resource for any student impacted by sexual misconduct, and she highlighted the importance of the resources fair and other events, such as the recent Green Dot Day, that help raise awareness of the office on campus.

Bolash wrote that she was satisfied with the results of the event.

The atmosphere during the event was very energetic and engaged—it made all of us feel gratified for the work we had put in,”she wrote, emphasizing that the food trucks added to the sense of community at the event and that the event organizers received positive feedback from both students and the groups that tabled. “Students have had positive things to say about the event, especially our raffle winners! The attending resources were sent a feedback form to let us know how they felt about it and that has been very positive as well.”

The Education Committee views this event as one step in an ongoing process of boosting student engagement with on-campus resources.

“We are hoping to hold the event again in the fall next year,” Bolash wrote.