Keene State Students stopped at various tables set up along Appian Way during Campus Safety’s second annual Campus Night Out to check out what resources are offered to them.
Campus Night Out was hosted Thursday evening, Sept. 21, where campus safety invited campus resources and other local resources to connect with students.
“[It’s] a bunch of people just kind of coming together, having honest conversations, breaking down barriers and just really having a good time and asking questions that you can’t always ask or you might not feel comfortable asking,” Ian Matheson, a campus safety officer, said.
The event was hosted in a similar fashion prior to COVID-19 in and around 2017 and 2018, but took a hiatus. Campus Safety members were able to bring it back to the students last year, where it gained lots of praise from the community, Matheson said.
Compared to last year, this time around it featured snacks and drinks. Students were able to walk up to a table and grab donuts, brownies and cookies. Along with iced tea and coffee.
More organizations were also invited, Matheson said.
Organizations like the Keene Police and Fire Department were set up, along with the New Hampshire State Police and New Hampshire Liquor Enforcement. Other organizations such as The River Center and the Monadnock Center for Violence Protection were in attendance. Campus resources like The Wellness Center had a table too.
Keene police brought out the BearCat – an armored vehicle Keene Police purchased through a homeland security grant they received of $285,933, according to an article from June 2023 by The Keene Sentinel.
Keene Fire Department brought one of their fire trucks for people to see as well.
New Hampshire Liquor enforcement gave students the opportunity to wear drunk goggles and drive a golf cart to see first-hand the dangers of drunk driving.
Senior Amelia Guarino came to Campus Night Out with Junior Peter St. Germain and walked around visiting the tables that Campus Safety invited.
“I heard there was going to be dogs, be therapy dogs, and I was like, ‘This is right up my alley’,” Guarino said.
The therapy dogs ended up being the highlight of Guarino’s night, she said.
St. Germain said he liked all of the resources that the Campus Night Out had to offer.
“You know what resources are available,” St. Germain said. “Not only in the university, but in the surrounding, either in surrounding towns or just in general.”
Sophomore Reganne Trevino was walking around Appian Way checking it all out. At the time of the interview she had only visited one table, the River Center.
“It’s awesome seeing everybody here that I know,” she said.
With this being the second time Campus Safety has hosted this event, Matheson said to keep an eye out for it to happen again next year.
“It was a great opportunity for, you know, not even just other agencies, but our department to engage with students,” he said.
Besides providing resources to students, Matheson said it’s a great way for these organizations to do outreach and possibly put the bug in students’ ears for when they graduate.
He said students might remember the officer they talked to or the organization they talked to and maybe decide to eventually apply.
Campus Night Out functions as a way for students to see what is out there, according to Matheson. He noted that the Fire Marshalls present could be of interest to Safety and Occupational Health Applied Sciencemajors.
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