Love is in the air, and organizations across campus are celebrating Valentine’s Day in many ways.
From Feb. 8 to Feb. 13., students can participate in many Valentine’s Day related events. Students can decorate cookies, make valentines and watch couples compete for a free date night. These events are an opportunity for students to spend time with the people they love while supporting several on-campus organizations.
Couples compete in Drury’s “Newlywed” game
Do Drury couples know their partners as well as they think they do? On Feb. 13 at 7 p.m., several on-campus couples will participate in The Drury Couples Challenge, to find out if panther romances can survive the true test of love: the “Newlywed” game. This event is sponsored by the Counseling Department and will take place in Findlay Student Center Ballroom.
“The Drury Couples Challenge is modeled after the old “Newlywed” game show, which a lot of people might not know about because it was really popular in the ‘70s, ‘80s and ‘90s,” Drury’s mental health counselor, Jena Steele, said. “Couples compete against other couples by asking questions of their partners to see how well they know each other. It can get really funny depending on the types of questions you ask.”
Seven student couples and one faculty couple have agreed to participate.
According to Steele, Residence Life and Greek Life staff recommended the student couples that are participating event. Both people in each student couple attend Drury or have recently graduated from Drury. Furthermore, both people in each couple are involved in fraternities, sororities, sports or other organizations on campus.
While Steele wanted the identity of the faculty couple to remain a surprise until the event, each of the couples featured are in different stages of their relationships.
“We’re going to have couples who have been together for all lengths of time,” said Steele. “We are going to have couples who are newly dating, couples who have been together a year, or two, or three, and maybe our faculty couple has been together several years. We’re trying to ask questions that all could answer.”
Steele explained that the couples will be asked a mixture of serious, fun and possibly racy questions. Some examples of questions couples may be asked are “What do you think your partner’s favorite meal is?” and “Where were we the first time we kissed?”
Couples earn points when one partner’s answer to a question matches the other partner’s answer. The couple with the most points at the end of the game wins.
The winning couple will receive movie tickets and dinner for a Valentine’s Day date.
Students Lindsey Hedrick and Michael Slamb are one of the couples competing on Tuesday night. They have been dating for almost seven months.
Hedrick feels confident in their ability to compete in this challenge.
“I’m excited about it because I think we are going to win,” she said.
However, Slamb admitted that his bad memory may hurt the couple’s chances of obtaining the prize.
“I’ve been telling her my favorite color is red, but I might get up there and say green,” he said,
Despite any disadvantages the couple may have, they are determined to win.
“I’ve been quizzing him every night about random facts and things they might ask us,” said Hedrick.
The Drury Couples Challenge allows the Counseling Department to give back to the students they serve in an entertaining and engaging way.
“The Counseling Department is often really busy,” said Steele. “We stay down here [in the FSC] and see students all the time, so we like to be able to put on one or two events every year where we can be more out there and do something fun to give back to the students.”
Healthy Relationship Contest challenges friends and couples alike
Students can also evaluate their own relationships this week.
Do you have a happy and healthy relationship with your sweetheart or best friend? You can get a chance to prove it with Panthers for Prevention’s Healthy Relationship Contest.
The questionnaire encourages team members to answer questions about what they think makes a relationship healthy and how their relationship showcases these qualities. Don’t have a significant other? No worries. You and a friend can enter as a team.
Questionnaires are available in the Commons Feb. 5-8.
Winners in each category (Couples and Friends) will be announced at Sex on Campus on Feb. 12 in FSC 108. Even those that do not win the contest can reap the benefits of submitting a questionnaire, as each Drury student of the submitting teams will receive five raffle tickets towards a door prize at Sex on Campus.
The contest is hosted by Panthers for Prevention, which is a health and wellness organization that promotes and encourages healthy decisions among the Drury community. This is the third year that they have used the contest to spread awareness for domestic violence.
“I think it’s important to get people talking about what a healthy relationship consists of. Every paper copy we hand out has some information on relationship warning signs attached to the back,” said Panthers for Prevention President Kim Edwards.
Domestic violence can be especially prevalent in college students. According to The National Domestic Violence Hotline, 57% of college students who report experiencing dating violence and abuse say it occurred in college. More than half of all college students say that it is difficult to identify dating abuse, according to this study.
The Healthy Relationship Contest raises awareness for domestic violence by celebrating happy couples.
“I also think it’s helpful, even for those already in healthy relationships, to reflect on how they interact with and care about each other,” said Edwards.
Be sure to attend Sex on Campus to see what it takes to be the healthiest couple on campus. It might even be you and yours.
Four fundamentals of a healthy relationship
The Drury Couples Challenge and the Healthy Relationship Contest encourage students to recognize and pursue healthy relationships.
“I think another reason we are doing this is that it not only [about] Valentine’s Day, but it is also about relationships,” said Steele. “We want to promote healthy relationships, and this is a fun way to do that.”
Steele explained that most healthy relationships consist of four fundamental aspects: comfort, communication, trust and respect.
Here are a few questions for students to ask of their relationships:
1. Do you feel comfortable with the person you’re with?
2. Do you have good communication?
3. Do you trust the person you’re with?
4. Do you respect one another?
Students should take time to assess their relationships this Valentine’s Day.
If students are in a harmful relationship or situation, the Counseling Center can help.
“An unhealthy relationship would definitely be any type of abuse, whether that be emotional, physical or sexual,” said Steele.
The Counseling Center’s services are available to all day students. The Counseling Center is located in the Findlay Student Center, room 114. The counselors can be reached at (417) 873-7457 or (417) 873-7418.
Decorate cookies for the ones you love!
There are a million ways to show you care about someone, but perhaps one of the best ways is to give your sweetie something sweet. Sure, you could go to the store and buy a big box of chocolates, but another option is that you could attend one of the many free cookie decorating events sponsored by Drury organizations.
If you are a Sunderland resident, you can join the Sunderland Residence Life Council on Feb. 8 from 6:30-8 p.m.
Other students and faculty members can join the residents of the Humanities House on Feb. 12 at 6 p.m. Not only can you decorate cookies at this event, but you can makes valentines for your loved ones, too. The Humanities House is located at 517 E Calhoun Street.
If you still cannot get enough of decorating cookies, your last chance is at Olin Library on Feb. 13 from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. This event is sponsored by the Commuter Student Association.
Students looking for free treats will have plenty of chances to satisfy their sugary cravings by Feb. 14.
There are plenty of ways to celebrate throughout the week. You can support a variety of Drury organizations this Valentine’s Day season, while reminding the ones you love that you care. The Counseling Center and Panthers for Prevention give students a great opportunity to analyze how healthy their relationships are, but also incorporates some fun events, too.
Article written by Taylor Stanton and Delilah Gadd