Smaller budget produces creative Spirit Week

University Communications and Marketing sponsors low-budget Spirit Week and Associated Students offer creative activities.

Julia Henning, Writer

Those involved with planning and carrying out the Spirit Week activities are doing so on less than $3,000. The university communications and marketing department in Upper Metzger Hall uses this money to fund the advertising and purchase of the supplies necessary for making Spirit Week, Feb.19 to 25, a success.

“We [Associated Students] have been in communication with each other for months to discuss what this year’s Spirit Week would entail,” said Jennifer Essig, the Spirit Board chair.

Low budget encourages creativity

AS hosted activities including laser tag, on Sunday, Feb. 19, and will contribute workers and some funds to host the tailgate on Saturday, Feb. 25, according to Essig.

“They’re really not complicated events. It’s all about being creative,” said Victoria Smith, Biola’s director of events, referring to the Spirit Week budget.

This creativity means that many of the prizes for the Tweet Hunt have been donated. UCM has been resourceful in terms of using things that Biola already owns, such as balloons, and having Bon Appétit serve dinner outside for the tailgate.

The Tweet Hunt is a creative approach to educate the students on Biola and its history.

“[It’s a] week-long Twitter-based scavenger hunt. A clue is tweeted from the Biola account and students go to the location the tweet refers to,” Velasco said.

The first one there gets a prize. Tweets have been going out all week at either 10:40 a.m. or 1:04 p.m., since it is Biola’s 104th birthday.

The Tweet Hunt was set up by Brenda Velasco, manager of internal communications and public relations at Biola, in collaboration with Smith and social media manager and university writer Brett McCracken. Velasco communicated with AS prior to the hunt to discuss clues, as well as how students would react to prizes, according to Velasco.

“It’s fun to work with students to instill enthusiasm about the history and heritage of Biola in a fun way and celebrate Biola’s birthday — bringing the foundation of the university to the forefront of student’s minds,” Velasco said.

She designed the Tweet Hunt three years ago to specifically teach students more about Biola’s legacy.

Maximizing students’ experiences

“I don’t really know what Spirit Week is about so I’m excited to see what’s happening. I also like that it seems [UCM is] allocating their funds appropriately,” said Riley Wall, a sophomore intercultural studies major.

Like other students, he cares about where the university is investing its money.

“Having worked here for six years, having been a student, and having worked with students, I understand that they want to know we are getting the best value for the money we spend. We want to spend money on things that maximize the students’ experiences,” Smith said.

She believes that Biola does an excellent job of holding all of the departments accountable when it comes to budgets and finances.

“Next year will be a bigger year. Nothing like the centennial, but there will be larger events and more going on for the 105th anniversary,” Smith said.

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