UA Little Rock PEAW Fest Goes Off Without a Hitch

University of Arkansas at Little Rock freshmen participated in a scavenger hunt coined “PEAW Fest” from Aug. 30 to Sept. 1.

PEAW (Personal Awareness) Fest focuses on helping freshmen connect with each other and learn their way around campus. It’s an important way for students to develop a sense of belonging on campus. PEAW Fest helps with this goal by having students engage with department representatives and learn about the services they provide.

A total of 319 students participated in the event. They were divided into teams of four to six and instructed to take team pictures in each department they visited. There were five positions to choose from: leader, information finder, logistics, picture taker, and document submitter.

“Each team was given a fill-in-the-blank sheet that described each of the 13 departments,” said Dr. Trakenya Dobbins, director of personal awareness. “Students received these sheets during the first week of class and mapped out their team route to visit each of the departments within 45-50 minutes.”

The 13 departments include the Bursar’s Office, Ask Desk, TRIO Student Support Services, Health Center, Fitness Center, Disability Resource Center, Communications Skill Center, Mathematics Assistance Center, University Writing Center, Trojan Tutoring Center, and Multicultural Center. Representatives in each department were waiting with brochures, informational handouts, and giveaways such as “swag bags” and candy.

“This took two days of preparation and allowed the students to communicate with each other, get to know each other better, work together, and build team spirit,” PEAW professor Avestine Ward said.

The PEAW administration created the PEAW Scavenger Hunt in fall 2015. During COVID, the assignment morphed into virtual presentations, so this is the first in-person scavenger hunt PEAW has held since fall 2020.

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