Working to bridge the gap between campus and the community, Binghamton University hosted the fourth annual BU Day at the Oakdale Mall.
The tables set up throughout the middle of the mall Saturday included science demonstrations and presentations from various departments, as well as on-campus clubs. The science tables featured experiments such as extracting DNA from strawberries and turning nickels into copper.
Alexa Chaplin, a resident of Binghamton, said that she attends BU Day every year with her kids and appreciates the activities set up at the science tables.
“I think they just really appreciate all the hands on activities,” Chaplin said. “It gives them an idea of the different things that can happen on campus.”
Mall patrons went from one table to the next, learning about various aspects of the University to a backdrop of live music, performances and a heavy emphasis on BU pride — complete with giveaways of BU posters, T-shirts and other freebies.
Representing BU were the chemistry and biology departments and clubs, WHRW 90.5 FM, the Anderson Center, the University Police Department, the Center for Civic Engagement and the Multicultural Resource Center.
Jake Weiss, a sophomore double-majoring in finance and history and representing the PricewaterhouseCoopers Scholars, said helping through community service is the most important thing students can do.
“Students want to help,” Weiss said. “We want to make it a better community; we want to come back in five years and love what’s going on.”
Darcy Fauci, who works in the president’s office as the public relations assistant to the chief of staff, coordinated Saturday’s event. For her, promoting the University as a place to strive to attend is an important part of the day.
“We want them to start thinking, as little as some of these kids are, that ‘This is a place where I want to go to school’ and really build some Binghamton University pride,” Fauci said.
According to Donna Lupardo, New York State assemblywoman for the 123rd district, a strong connection between the University and the community is necessary.
“It’s a great opportunity for Binghamton University to showcase all of what they have going on,” Lupardo said. “It really fosters that connection that we strive for.”
Donald Nieman, provost at BU, said the event helped show the array of programs available at the University.
“I hope that what the community takes away from this is what a diverse community Binghamton is,” Nieman said. “I hope they take away the diversity of academic programs, that we have strong programs in the liberal arts and humanities but also strong programs in business and engineering and sciences as well.”
Fauci was pleased with the overall turnout.
“I think it’s very good, all of our tables are active,” Fauci said. “There’s a lot of engagement, so I’m very happy with it.”