Despite the restrictions on student activities on campus, there are still many opportunities for students to connect with others. Among these opportunities sponsored by VWU’s campus programming board, Off the Hook, are two virtual trivia nights every week where students can win themed prizes.
Past trivia themes have included sports, pop culture, Star Wars, rap and shows like The Office and The Bachelor. “Our themes are just something that is interesting to the event supervisor who’s hosting it but other times it might be based on what is popular or what’s going on at the time,” said Director of Student Activities Sarah Guzzo.
Prizes for the events tend to be related to the theme of the overall event. Prizes for trivia events can vary in range, and are picked up in the Student Activities office located in downstairs Batten.
“For my Star Wars event we did a Star Wars LED lamp and Star Wars themed face masks,” said freshman Event Supervisor Melina Cabral. The winner of The Office trivia took home a “World’s Best Boss” mug and the rap trivia winner was given The Rap Cookbook which contains favorite recipes of famous rappers. The winner of the Marvel cinematic universe trivia will win a full DVD set of Marvel movies.
Students can join trivia via a Google Meet link and by entering the Kahoot game code. A typical trivia night has six to twelve participants. This allows for those who are remote to participate in these events from home as well.
“With a smaller audience that’s kind of better for us, virtually, because people can actually see each other and it’s easier for them to interact without too many people kind of bogging down the cameras or talking over each other. They can also see the common interests with other students on campus and make those connections,” Guzzo said. This gives students a conversation topic and a way to meet new people virtually.
“I think the Star Wars trivia event went really well. It ran very smoothly via Google Meet and I didn’t run into any complications or technical difficulties when hosting the event,” Cabral said.
“I had a sports trivia night previously and it had a pretty good turnout. I think not much needs to be changed and I think it went great. Us marlins love competition and that’s what the students and faculty brought,” said sophomore Event Supervisor, Gabe Jessup. “I would do a ton of trivia nights and I hope to have a ton more recommendations from others”.
Off the Hook works with community members to find trivia topics that interest them. “We’re not necessarily looking for increased participation or a lot of numbers. We’re just happy with quality events and not necessarily the quantity now. Our whole goal this semester is just to make sure that people are staying connected because there aren’t too many opportunities for connection and if there is connection it is more possible via the virtual event,” Guzzo said.
“It was a group idea to do trivia nights by Marlins Off the Hook. We all come up with themes for trivia nights separately and get them approved by Sarah Guzzo and Student Programming Coordinator Audwin Harris,” Cabral said. Off the Hook found that there was a decrease in student organization activities and wanted to find a way to increase offerings while working through extra planning stages.
With COVID-19 restrictions there is more planning that goes into student activities than usual. Off the Hook has had to lengthen their planning process while maintaining the essence of the events and have been creative in finding ways to hold traditions.
Students can find more information and updates on future activities through Off the Hook’s Instagram page, which is quite active. Off the Hook posts the days leading up to and on the day of the event.
For those not on Instagram, students can look at the campus events calendar or check out the email sent out by Student Activities containing weekly events. There are sometimes chalk advertisements on the pavement outside of Boyd Dining Center as well as stairwell banners and flyers in the Batten Student Center.
Future trivia nights will include Disney trivia with Melina on Nov. 4 at 7 p.m, history with Gabe on Nov. 7 at 5 p.m. and Marvel cinematic universe with Hannah on Nov. 11 at 7 p.m.
By AJ Adan