Upcoming Events to Feature Furry Friends

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Upcoming Events to Feature Furry Friends

Life is better when you can depend on a furry friend. Or perhaps one with feathers or scales. During several upcoming events at Tri-C, students and staff can introduce their human friends to their animal ones. 

Occurring first, from April 12-30 will be the It’s Raining Cats and Dogs virtual pet competition. Students from all campuses can submit photos and interesting facts about their pets for a chance to win prizes, which are to be determined, explained Meagan Gibson, director of student engagement at East campus. Faculty and staff can also enter but are not eligible for prizes, she said. Students will vote for their favorite pets online.

Virtual pet competitions were held last year at some campuses, but this year there is just one for everyone.

“It’s been on our minds for awhile to do something campus wide,” said Amanda Fronek, director of student engagement at Westshore, who is also the interim assistant dean of student affairs at that campus.

Categories will depend on what types of animals are entered, Gibson said.

For more information go to tri-c.edu/student-life and click on virtual engagement opportunities.

Fronek plans to enroll current and future animal family members in the competition. Her dog Mo, an 11-year-old German shepherd, will present some furry competition in the dog category, and her plans to acquire a fish may cause an aquatic upset.

Next, on April 30 at noon, faculty and staff will have a relaxing break where they will virtually bring their pets to work. It’s part of Fun Fridays, which take place once a month, put on by a recently-formed group.

“Tri-C Social is a committee that formed during the pandemic,” Gibson said, explaining the members come up with ways to keep employees in contact with one another.

During the lunch break, they can “spend a little time relaxing and reconnecting with people,” she said.

Gibson’s Harry Potter-named pets will be appearing on camera. Her Labrador mix Sirius Black and her cat Petrificus, or Petri for short, plan to attend, she said.

Staff are also encouraged to post about their pets on Instagram with #tricsocial.

The third animal-themed online event has been a favorite, even before the pandemic. During Ruff Relief, which will be at noon on May 3, students and employees can meet and learn about therapy dogs virtually.

It is the second time this finals-week event is occurring online. Pre-pandemic, therapy dogs would visit some campuses.

At Westshore, “it was our most highly-attended event of the year,” Fronek said.

Gibson explained that last year, students began putting their own pets on camera and talking to the group about them as well.

Having the students see all the animals “will just bring a smile to their faces,” Fronek said.

More information about Ruff Relief can be found at tri-c/student-life under virtual engagement opportunities.

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