Excited students crowded the bleachers of the Marion Bowman Activities Center on Thursday, August 25, Counseling Services sponsored a back-to-school Bingo for all students.
Bingo was a rousing game that had a special meaning behind it. Students tested their luck at winning a variety of extravagant prize items such as: flat screen TVs, a PS4, an Xbox one, a GoPro, a Keurig, and much more.
“This is the first major on campus event, and it’s to spread awareness of the counseling services offered on-campus, to show the chill and friendly atmosphere it provides,” said Krista Jones, assistant director of the counseling center.
“Bingo is fun and I heard they had some awesome prizes, it’s the first school event I’ve gone to. It’s also nice that Counseling Services was behind it too,” said Courtney Ricks, Senior, Psychology major.
Free “Stamp out Stigma” T-shirts and stickers were given out during the game, to spread the Association for Behavioral Health and Wellness campaign of changing perceptions and reduce the stigma of mental illness and substance use disorders by encouraging people to talk about them.
“We wanted to show that it’s normal or common to experience stress, anxiety, and depression,” Jones said. Students will normally experience these symptoms two out of their four years and seek help for themselves or friends, as 359 students are currently.” said Jones.
These are confidential, easily accessible, direct mental health services. They are free services for students, waived through the student activity fee.
The animated crowd of students remained the entire three hours of the game, the last round being the most intense in attempts to win the grand prize large flat screen TV. Although not everyone won a prize, they were still enthused to have participated in the first festivity of the school year.
The Counseling Center is located in DeChantal Hall and can be reached at 352-588-8199.
1. Students are sitting in the bleachers with their cards out, preparing to play Bingo.
2. The table that featured all of the available prizes eventually won by students at the end of the game.
3. A student shoots out free T-shirts from a cannon into the crowd.
4. Students choose Bingo numbers from a pool and announce them to the crowd.