From left to right Katie Biggs, Hannah Safran, Erika Martin, and Kelsey Flether show some festive Christmas gear during the fourth annual Jingle Bell Jog hosted by the Shepherd University Wellness Center on December 1, 2012. The event, which had 27 participants, collects toys and food items for local charities during the holiday season. Photography by Don Zumbach.
December 4, 2012 | by Contributor
Shepherd Celebrates the Holidays

Students at Shepherd University have the opportunity to get into the holiday spirit with a variety of holiday-inspired events held before the end of the semester.

Photography by Don Zumbach.

Photography by Don Zumbach.

Program Board will be sponsoring Stress Busters 2012 from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. in the Student Center Ram’s Den on Dec. 5. The event will feature massage chairs, holiday cookie decorating, and a wide variety of activities that will give students an opportunity to relax before finals. The subcommittee aims to assist students with stress relieving events.

Many students at Shepherd look forward to these stress relief events, as it gives them a chance to settle down in between their exams. First year students will be experiencing these Shepherd events for the first time. Freshman psychology major Brittney Crist believes anything to attack the stress of finals week will help.

Crist said, “I’m going to be crazy that week. The pressure is on, but I’m looking forward to decorating my own cookies and taking full advantage of that massage chair. I didn’t even know colleges had events like this.”

Program Board director Rachel Meads stated that the events are aimed toward the diverse range of holidays that Shepherd students celebrate.

Meads said, “We try not to focus in too much on specific holidays because we don’t want to make folks who feel sad during the holidays more blue or make those who don’t celebrate Christmas feel excluded.”

The Office of Student Community Services is coordinating annual holiday giving programs on campus which will help the community ministries and Salvation Army. Students will be provided with a list of suggested items. The families and children have been identified as ones who are not fortunate enough to receive any holiday gifts this season. Gifts will be collected through Dec. 7. Volunteers may stop by the Community Service Office in the Student Center or call Caitlyn or Michelle at 304-876-5402.

Photography by Don Zumbach..

Photography by Don Zumbach.

Sophomore biology major Jacob Abbott said the holiday events at Shepherd give students a sense of belonging.

Abbott said, “It’s kind of what makes Shepherd so unique. We have a great community here. I participated in helping community services donate to Salvation Army last year. It just feels good to give back and be part the events. This is a university and community that actually cares about their students.”

The Shepherd Bookstore will give out Shepherd Rams plush dolls with a purchase of $50 or more through Dec. 7. Students also have the option of keeping the ram or donating it for the Salvation Army stockings.

Students enjoyed various crafts, tasty treats, and a special holiday movie to kick start the holiday season already this semester. Program Board sponsored a holiday ornament making event on Nov. 28, allowing many students to gather in the Student Center and design their very own ornament to take home for the holidays. Program Board will also sponsor a showing of “Elf” at the Shepherdstown Opera House on Dec. 4.

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