Rutgers students watch as election results roll in
While the country anxiously awaited the decision of the next president, Rutgers students gathered in the College Avenue Student Center for politically themed games, food and to watch history happen.
Roughly 200 students gathered in the Multipurpose room to watch the election on screens showing FOX News and CNN. Student Affairs’ Leadership & Experiential Learning Department hosted the viewing party. The event opened to students at 7 p.m.
“We wanted to be able to engage with the community altogether and have an opportunity for folks to come together and watch election results come in and be able to a supportive network of peers and perspective sharers,” said Robyn Ginese, director for Leadership and Experiential Learning.
The Election Night Viewing Party is a part of the Leadership Department’s Leadership Week, Ginese said.
The department came up with the idea of the viewing party a couple of months ago, when they realized leadership week coincided with the election, said Brittany Schlechter, an assistant director for Leadership and Experiential Learning.
“We decided that given this is a very contested election that we could bring our students together in one space to let them know that this is an environment, is a brave space, that you can express your opinions and also watch everything together and we can still be a community at the end of the day, because we are still one nation at the end of the day,” she said.
Schlechter said the event is meant to bring people together, despite political affiliation, and provide the community with a place to come together and be united.
The viewing party included leadership and awareness activities, Ginese said.
Activities included a “Presidential Walkway of Fame” with a red carpet and cardboard cutouts of famous presidents, a live feed Twitter wall, a “stress buster” section where students make stress balls and color, “campaign central” where students make campaign posters and “issue alley” where students write down their opinions and educate themselves on key issues, Schlechter said.
Not having cable and wanting to be around other students for the election motivated John Lee to partake in the event.
“I actually wanted to talk about this,” said School of Arts and Sciences senior John Lee. “My roommates aren’t very politically involved, so I wanted to engage in political discourse and see what other people think about this election. I also wanted to have some air of celebration if my given candidate wins.”
Chloe Dopico is a School of Arts and Sciences sophomore majoring in political science and journalism and media studies. She is a staff writer for The Daily Targum.