Lost in Translation
By Lee Yowell, Associate Dean of Student Development
I got a call from a parent several weeks ago, he and his wife were looking for an excuse to visit their son and were thinking about coming down during the MVNU Parents' Weekend. However this father was calling me because his son informed him that "nothing was going on that weekend." He wanted some clarification, as he had received a postcard in the mail that outlined a lot of different events scheduled for the weekend.
I assured him that there was quite a bit going on that weekend and encouraged them to come down for Parents' Day. After listing off the numerous events and activities planned for the weekend, he was confused by his son's comment. From time to time, we hear this sentiment from students. It can be a bit misleading. Some students are busier on the weekends than during the school week, you might see a student going to the basketball game, the midnight matinee, the concert in the PSU, Residence Life events, Friday Night Live, etc. Then, talking with that same student on Monday, you might ask them what they did over the weekend; their response is often, "Nothing."
I suppose we are all guilty of this. My wife came downstairs last night while I was watching TV and asked, "What are you watching?" and my response was "Nothing." Then she asked if anything was on TV, and my response... "Nope." I laugh at myself but I suppose we've all been there.
At the end of the day, to suggest that there is "nothing to do," one has to believe that all of our teams are playing away, Student Government has no activities planned, Residence Life is not doing any programming or events, all of the clubs and organizations on campus have nothing going on, and there are no papers to write, books to read, or studying to do for class. So, as you can imagine it is very unlikely to be true. I suppose it's just a matter of perspective. So the next time you hear, "There's nothing to do on campus," consider asking some probing question and see if that is really the case or if something is simply being lost in translation.