CBU community staying connected through social media
Riverside, Calif. (April 1, 2020) – While the California Baptist University campus may be closed due to a coronavirus directive from the County of Riverside Health Officer, Lancers are turning to social media and online platforms to stay connected.
Community Life welcomed students back from spring break and asked them to post photos of their “first day from home outfits” on Instagram.
On April 2, Community Life will host a virtual Open Mic Night.
“There is a campus-wide effort to ramp up social media content to engage our students and continue to create community while at home,” said Kristin Holderman, director of campus activities for Community Life. “That is our goal—to continue to provide purposeful programming that connects the students to each other and the University, even while we're all at home.”
Stefani Plummer, director of the Recreation Center, said her office is providing exercise ideas using household items in addition to offering tips to stay active and healthy from home on its Instagram site.
“One of the purposes is to give students the ability to continue their community during this season,” Plummer said. “We really hope it provides a smooth transition back into the ‘normal’ once the school is open to activities.”
The Recreation Center is also providing virtual tours of national parks; and intramurals via a FIFA league on esports to offer fun activities online.
The Office of Spiritual Life at CBU hosted a Challenge virtual conference over spring break and will continue to hold virtual discipleship group meetings this semester.
Brian Zunigha, director of discipleship ministries in Spiritual Life, said the Challenge team had been in the process of creating videos and podcasts to encourage students in their faith journey. This content can now be listened to or watched through the Challenge App or through the Challenge channel on Spotify.
“In this unique time, we still have a call and command to make disciples, so we’re utilizing the different communication platforms we have available to do that,” Zunigha said. “As we’ve talked about how to continue to stay connected, we are amazed to see all the ways God has provided for us to continue investing in lives to develop followers of Jesus.”
The student response to online communities has been positive, Holderman said.
“We've had a good amount of student engagement and feedback that is encouraging as we continue. We've had a few students express appreciation for the efforts as well,” Holderman said.
CBU clubs are also connecting remotely. For instance, the United Club held a virtual pajama party last week. The Art Club will live stream a portraiture workshop on Instagram on April 3.
“When school moved online, I knew that we could still keep the Art Club going by providing virtual workshops,” said Emme Evans, an art therapy sophomore and the club’s president. “We aim to host workshops with materials that people may have at home. What is unique about the livestream is that viewers are able to communicate and ask questions.”