Fourth-graders tour library, get taste of LU spirit
A class of 29 fourth-grade students from Dearington Elementary School in Lynchburg visited Liberty University's campus on Thursday to tour the new Jerry Falwell Library, where they explored some of the technology, made crafts, had storytime with Flames Football players, and met Sparky, the Flames mascot.
After their library visit, the students went to the Vines Center, Liberty's basketball arena, for a tour and bag lunch, after which they went to East Campus to watch a Flames Field Hockey game.
The event was coordinated by Liberty's School of Education, Athletics Department, and Curriculum Library, with Dr. Kristina DeWitt, associate professor of education, Morgaine Godwin, academic and student-athlete development coordinator, and Shelley Oakley, curriculum librarian, serving as organizers.
DeWitt said that the students were especially enthusiastic about the group study rooms in the library, where they were able to draw all over the tables and walls, which are coated in a special paint that makes the surface similar to that of a white board.
In the Curriculum Library, students listened to senior defensive lineman Dominique Davis read "Creepy Carrots!" and then made a bookmark of the book's title character. Each student was given a copy of the book to keep.
DeWitt explained that this event was a great way to expose the community to higher education and get them excited about it.
"We wanted to show the kids at that age that anything is possible if they work hard," she said, noting the football players were great role models to the students as they talked to them about their education experiences.
"There is that community bonding with them. (You can tell them) 'I was a fourth-grader at one time and you can also achieve this.'"
She added that some of the children had never been on a college campus before and were excited to see facilities, like the Vines Center's collegiate basketball court, up close.
"I heard a couple of the students say, 'I want to go to college someday, I want to come to Liberty.'"