On February 4, 2021 the Undergraduate Student Senate launched a Boxer Discord server for students. The hope is that this platform can be used to announce and host events, as well as connect students.

Anna Kim, the Vice President of Student Leadership, was one of the driving forces behind the project. 

“It was an idea I brainstormed over winter break based on what I’d seen over fall semester,” said Kim. “There was a lot of struggle with student engagement and lack of connection between students.” 

Undergraduate Student Senate President Doan Pham noticed the same trend from last semester as well. 

“This year has been such a challenging year in terms of engagement with students, especially with freshmen and transfer students,” said Pham. “It can be really stressful in college when you don’t know anybody.”

The goals of the server were to create a space not only for students to refer to for information, but also a space to be able to make new connections and new friends. While the rollout of the server has been slow, Kim is holding out hope. She wants to encourage students to explore, even if they don’t have much experience with Discord. USS is also hoping to hold more virtual sessions for students to teach them how to use the platform in the future. 

Already, the server has hosted events such as Virtual Caricatures, where a professional caricature artist drew students. In the future, students can look forward to more fun events such as a happy hour mixer after the upcoming Club Fair in March. 

Pi Kappa Rho member Ally Smith has used the server to promote events for the fraternity. 

“I think the server will be a good way to get information fast and to hear about things going on on campus from the students,” said Smith. “I did an Among Us tournament on Discord with the gaming voice chat and it was super convenient and fun.” 

As of Friday, Feb. 26, there are 141 students on the Discord server. If interested, follow the link to join the server yourself and learn more about upcoming events, and potentially even make some new friends. — Ella Cutter

Photo courtesy of Anna Kim

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Ella Cutter is a senior staff writer for the Index. She is currently pursuing degrees in journalism and editing and publishing, and also works for the downtown Portland indie press zines + things.

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