March madness event scores student midterm success


Andrew Pease / Journal Staff

The Suffolk Athletics Department and Division of Student Success co-hosted an event called Midterm March Madness on the ninth floor of 73 Tremont last Thursday. The focus was on learning about the services Suffolk provides students through academic programs and the opportunities joining Suffolk athletics can bring.

The two departments are highly connected, as student-athletes receive advising and tailored schedules to help them balance their workloads and graduate on time. Student athletes are involved with other aspects of Suffolk’s campus and academic life, often promoting or helping set up events like this.

“We always try to be present at events like this in hopes of bringing people together,” said women’s basketball captain Shannon Smith in an interview with The Suffolk Journal.

Upon arrival, students were greeted at a check-in desk where they received an event passport which listed all of the academic programs displayed at the event. Continuing into the first room, tables for the Athletics Department, Career Development Center (CDC), Center for International Programs and Services, Center for Learning and Academic Success (CLAS) and the Undergraduate Academic Advising Center were set up in a circle.

At each specific program’s table a member of each department would greet and inform students about their program, making sure to highlight exactly what the program does for Suffolk students. After learning about a program and having all their questions answered, students would receive a hole punch in their passport for that specific program beforeheading to the next table.

Carolyn Crampton, an assistant coach of the Suffolk Women’s Basketball Team is also a full-time employee of Suffolk’s CDC and a member of their events planning committee.

“A lot of students aren’t aware of the resources available to them until they’re already here, and around this time midterms are stressful for everyone,” said Crampton in an interview with The Journal.

Andrew Pease / Journal Staff

Once students had filled up their passports with punches from the first room, a sign would direct them into the second room, which was filled with food, and a projector streaming the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament.

With their passport now complete, students were welcome to enjoy food; popcorn, pretzels and pretzel-dog bites were some of the most popular snacks, as well as a chocolate and vanilla ice cream sundae bar.

Food in hand, students then mingled with others in the new CLAS study lounge set up for viewing the University of Minnesota versus University of Louisville basketball game. When it came time for students to leave, they would pass the exit desk where they could show their completed passport and be entered into a grab bag raffle.

Shawn Gilhuly, an Assessment and Technology Administrator for the Division of Student Success, was running the last booth and discussed the department’s hopes for the event.

“We have very highly used services, during busy season, there’s a line out of the door for advising, so it’s important that we’re letting students know we are here and available,” said Gilhuly to The Journal.

For much of the event, the floor was packed with students who came out to watch hoops, eat food and learn about the academic services Suffolk provides year-round.

“I think it’s been really fun, it’s been very informative and important in helping me stay on top of my grades and wanting to go abroad,” said freshman Zane Hancock in an interview with The Journal.