Bulletin boards on college campuses — you’ve seen them, heard of some fun ones or maybe even created some yourself.
They are used to display college advice and department information, as well as build community across campus.
Most are seen in residence halls around campus like the ones in Baldwin, McAuley and Warde halls.
While students are used to seeing their RAs’ boards, many students may miss some of the other bulletin boards around campus in different departments, put together for the students’ benefit.
A lot of hard work is put into creating these for students, and every department and their corresponding hallways take great care and effort to make them look appealing.
Karen Morahan, Ph.D., associate professor in the Public Health department, is an advocate of bulletin boards and what they add to campus life.
“Creativity is something that should be appreciated across campus, including the planning and implementation of the bulletin boards,” Morahan said.
The Public Health bulletin boards are very prominent on Hirt’s upper level, where students Sydney Fitch and Katie Reisinger worked on them until 2 a.m. before the recent Public Health Open House.
In addition to Hirt, bulletin boards are found primarily in Zurn Hall, parts of Old Main and Egan Hall.
Heather Balas, director of the Career Development Center, puts work into creating eye-catching and bright displays for the students who pass through the hallways. “If you are going to do it, do it well and do it right,” so it benefits the students that need them, Balas said.
She had created an Incredibles-themed Career Development board in Egan, telling students that they can have an incredible career if they utilize the people and services available to them.
Most professors and faculty do not know if students actually use the boards or take the time to look at them. However, when the question was posed to a few students on campus, they had plenty of positive things to say.
Michelle Benedetti, sophomore Intelligence Studies major, enjoys looking at each board.
“The boards in Egan are ones I normally look at on my way to or from classes because they are colorful and useful. You can tell that a lot of work goes into them,” Benedetti said.
However, students also felt that they need to be simple to be genuinely looked at by students.
Cormac McCooey, junior Business major, shared a similar mindset.
“I notice them, but I do not stop to read them often,” he said. The exception for him was seeing some event or opportunity that pertained to his major.
Rachel Sallach, sophomore Human Resource Management major, said that she notices them, but does not always actively read them.
“They always catch my attention, but they don’t always get me to act unless I get a follow-up email about them,” Sallach said.
Many students often spend their time in certain buildings and only are subjected to the boards that they see every day. That is a downside to the bulletin boards, because not everyone can appreciate them.
The bulletin boards are meant to be eye catching and centered on what students might be interested in with worthwhile content.
RAs generally use them to give useful information to residents about events, safety or campus activities, and these boards are often highly personalized for student life.
Most creators keep the boards consistent with the time of year, and they are always student centered. Most recently, they have been showcasing new faculty additions to the Mercyhurst community.
They are considered an important feature on campus. As Morahan explained, the boards mean something to many people.
“They are a piece of our campus life. The walls speak, and students can listen,” Morahan said.
If you take a walk around campus and observe the bulletin boards that you have never seen before, it is true that they might have some valuable information that could pertain to you.