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Student government, organizations paint to help generate school pride

Submitted by Jacob Ellerbee on March 4, 2013 – 1:11 pmNo Comment

Members of Brother's Keeper, an African-American male initiative student organization, was one of many groups that helped paint local businesses in an effort to bring the community and the school closer together. Photo by Jacob Ellerbee

The Student Government Association hosted the Paint The Town Maroon initiative Saturday, March 2, in which various student organizations volunteered to paint the windows of nearby businesses, emblazoning them with symbols of Trojan pride.

SGA and its members provided the student organizations with all the necessary supplies to participate in the event, in addition to arranging the painting locations, all of which are on or near University Avenue.

President Rizan Mohsin said she thought this event would help bring these organizations together to work toward a common goal.

“The whole point of this was to get the Student Government to get everyone together and have everyone on campus focus on their similarities, rather than their differences,” Mohsin said. “We, as the SGA, wanted to give an activity that all student organizations could be a part of — not just SGA doing something, but working with all the students on campus. We’re representing them and we want them to be a part of what we do.”

Various leaders from each of the student organizations said the event was important to build and establish a relationship between the Student Government, student organizations, the University and members of the surrounding community.

“We really wanted this go well and to have everyone participate because we thought it’d really bring school pride and involve a lot people,” she said.

Sen. Trey Gibeault, a junior finance major and member of Pi Kappa Alpha — a fraternity better known on campus as “the Pikes” — said this will help spark a partnership between the community and the capital city’s largest college.

“Mainly, the importance is just kind of building that comradery with the community,” Gibeault said. “We’ve got a lot of spirited students, student organizations, faculty and staff, but we’re also trying to bring that spirit outside the campus to different businesses around here. I think this is a great opportunity to be able to get them involved with the campus spirit.”

Gibeault and his group helped paint the nearby Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen. Caroline Goodger, sophomore and member of the Kappa Delta sorority, said the initiative will help younger prospective students to start thinking about enrolling in and attending college.

“I think it’s inspiring for students to go to college,” Goodger said. “They see this and they want to get their friends together and come hang out and support our community.”

Goodger and her group painted the windows of nearby Subway delicatessen on University Avenue. Members of the Chi Omega sorority helped staffers from The Forum paint the windows of Arabica Hookah Café in the adjacent shopping plaza.

Natasha Jaffar, a freshman, said the initiative may be able to establish a tradition that people can look forward to each year.

“I think it brings together the entire community of UALR to actually be a family and support everything that we are all about,” Jaffar said. “Our school is so untraditional, but we can have traditions like this and make it traditional in that sense and we can kind of just make it family-like.”

Corrigan Revels, a sophomore with the Brother’s Keeper organization, said “Paint The Town Maroon”  is all about building a family-like atmoshpere for the students at UALR.

“It will build on the campus atmosphere and build a whole family atmosphere among the students,” Revels said.


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