As we continue to work, learn, and live socially distant identifying ways to engage with the world and other humans outside of work and school can be challenging. Zoom fatigue is real and often the lure of a Netflix binge is all you have the energy and capacity to handle....and that is ok. Our individual ability to engage with groups or one-on-one vary, especially during a time when we all have a layer of exhaustion and/or grief. However, participating in an affinity group, joining an online meet-up, or volunteering for an organization can aid in positive mental health. Taking part in these activities can lead to professional and personal friendships, provide academic and professional direction, and can assist in building a network for career purposes.
When the urge to get involved or connect with different folks happens or starts to seem like a necessity for managing your mental health, finding those opportunties can seem elusive. And yet even in the middle of this global health crisis there are lots of ischool, university, C-U community, and national opportunities that students can take advantage of either virtually or even in person in a socially distant safe way.
Read below for just a fraction of these opportunities. These are not meant to be exhaustive lists but rather ideas to help you get thinking about where YOU would like to engage. Please feel free to share others! And remember to...
Show UP for events
Step UP to volunteer
Chat it UP with friends
iSchool Virtual Student Coffee Hours
Meet other students, ask questions about classes or other iSchool ‘things’, find others with shared interests, or just use it as a time to break up some of the monotony of online learning and working! All students are welcome. November and December dates will be announced soon!
To join –https://illinois.zoom.us/j/85924262044?pwd=NTZYelFvcVR2cFR2aTVLZnpkNzZNUT09
Meeting ID: 859 2426 2044
Password: 393807Questions: Meg Edwards firstname.lastname@example.org
Book mark the iSchool Events Calendar - https://ischool.illinois.edu/news-events/events to stay up to date on events.
iSchool Student Organizations
Learn more about the iSchool's student organizations https://wiki.illinois.edu/wiki/display/ischool/Student+Organizations! Attend a student organization without even becoming a member!
Virtual Vet Med Open House
Explore the world of veterinary medicine online. Dozens of videos, interactive presentations, quizzes, and more focus on breaking down stereotypes of animals and veterinarians. The virtual Open House website will remaiin online through December 31. https://vetmed.illinois.edu/open-house/
Events and Food every Friday and Saturday
Every Friday and Saturday night food and events will be hosted at Memorial Stadium from 9pm - 1am.
Friday Night Movies
A double feature movie, with free hotdog, popcorn, candy and drink. You can bring your own food and non-alcoholic drinks as well. Also, bring blankets, pillows and make yourself comfortable. $4 beer and hard seltzers for purchase (21 and up with a valid ID). Doors open at 8pm and first movie starts at 9pm.
Saturday Night Concerts
Two bands playing sets with a DJ playing before, after and in between. Free pizza and drink (bottled water & hot chocolate). You can bring their own food and non-alcoholic drinks as well. Also, bring blankets, pillows, and make yourself comfortable. $4 Beer and hard seltzers for purchase (21 and up with a valid ID). Doors open at 8pm with a DJ. The first band starts at 9pm.For updates on the movies and bands/DJs, visit the new Student Affairs Activities website.
Taste of Language
Can anyone learn a language in 5 minutes? NO! But you could convince your roommate YOU DID in 2 minutes. But in all seriousness, Join ISSS for our very fun and approachable event entitled Taste of Language. Learn from fluent speakers of over ten (10) languages how to say simple greetings and phrases such as Hello, How are you?, Could you pass the ketchup! Put down the Squirrel! Monday, October 19 from 9am - 10am CDT. Register here!
Travel Around the World (TAtW)
International Student and Scholar Services and the Intensive English Institute present the Travel Around the World (TAtW) event! TAtW is an exciting experience that promotes cultural understanding and engagement. Travel with your fellow Illini to varied destinations across the Globe and experience many unique cultures. Join us for the fun and excitement of Travel Around the World! Register here!
Office of Volunteer Opportunities
The University of Volunteer Opportunities provides workshops and actual online volunteer opportunities for university students. Check them out - https://calendars.illinois.edu/list/5958
Champaign-Urbana (and surrounding areas) Opportunities
Champaign County Virtual Experiences
Tons and tons of virtual experiences from art exhibits, brewery tours, and musical and other cultural events. https://www.visitchampaigncounty.org/things-to-do/virtual-experiences
Harvest Moon Drive-In Theater
Make the short drive to Gibson City, IL to go to a drive in movie. Tickets must be purchased in advance. To purchase tickets and see showtimes and listings visit their website http://www.harvestmoondrivein.com/
Both Bloomington, IL and Decatur, IL have zoos. Stroll through on a Saturday or visit one of their events like "Boo at the Zoo".
Bloomington Miller Park Zoo - https://www.bloomingtonparks.org/facilities/miller-park-zoo
Decatur Scovill Zoo - https://www.decatur-parks.org/scovill-zoo/
Volunteer to help get out the vote! Here are just a few organizations that provide opportunities to do so:
League of Women Voters - https://www.lwvchampaigncounty.org/volunteer-opportunities.html
Champaign County Clerks Office - https://www.champaigncountyclerk.com/elections/work-election-judge
Find volunteer opportunities both virtual and in safe in-person organizations here. https://cuvolunteer.org/