As a cool autumn breeze swept by Olin Library, a celebration was in full swing inside its cozy doors. Many monsters and ghosts gathered inside with ghoulish intentions, and the smell of popcorn and corn dogs drifted through the air. Although one may have expected to see witches and goblins on that spooky afternoon, the library was actually full of students, faculty, and staff bonding over food and crafts during All Olin’s Eve.
All Olin’s Eve was an event created by the Olin Library Programming Committee, which was established last semester to bring the campus community together. The committee is run by Alyssa Hanson and Stephanie Nieves.
“The initiative of the programming committee is really just to increase engagement and outreach in the Rollins community with students, faculty and staff,” said Hanson.
According to Hanson and Nieves, the Olin Library struggled during the pandemic to attract and maintain a campus community. The library has since been running events throughout the semester to try and engage with students so that it can become a more inviting and welcoming space on campus.
In Spring 2023, the Olin Library celebrated its birthday and hosted an event during which students could come play board games, chat with friends, and have some food. Their goal has been to host two major events each year: one in the fall and one in the spring. All Olin’s Eve was this year’s fall event. The Olin Library Programming Committee invited various student organizations to help showcase the different ways that people celebrate the autumn season. The Latin American Student Association, Student Government Association, and the Board Game Club were all in attendance. Each student organization prepared their own craft or activity for students so that everyone could come together and get to know each other.
“[The Library] is excited to pull in all these departments to highlight some of the creativity,” said Nieves.
One of Olin’s main focuses is to be both engaging and educational. By inviting both student and academic organizations, they seek to educate students about diverse cultures and topics. For example, the Body Horror Workshop, hosted by Professor Vidhu Aggarwal, Autumn Cole (‘25), and Megan Reimers (‘24), helped students develop both their individual and collaborative writing skills. Afterward, Misty Walkins hosted a tarot reading workshop so that students could learn how to interpret and make stories using a tarot deck.
Another of the library’s main focuses is to be a community space where everyone feels welcome and accepted. The Board Game club invited students to play from games from Olin’s collection, which has been expanded in the hopes of growing their relationship with students.
All Olin’s Eve also encouraged students to contribute creatively. The 2-sentence horror story contest was an exciting opportunity for students to show off their best creative writing skills. There were some spine-chilling entries, but Megan Reimers (‘24) ultimately won first place. Opportunities like these allow students to receive recognition for their work while in the festive spirit.
All Olin’s Eve was a welcoming event that helped students come together and learn about the diverse ways that everyone celebrates the autumn season, while also enjoying food, crafts, and games together. The event was just one of many put on by the library to foster community and creativity. Whether or not you like spooky stories, the library is always the place for you to come for support, community, and education.