The Class of 2016 and new transfer students scoured the streets of center city Philadelphia on Sunday, Aug. 26. Toting smart phones equipped with Arcadia University’s SCVNGR mobile app, they checked-in at various locations and attempted challenges to earn points and unlock badges to win the first place prize, a Kindle Fire. Part of New Student Orientation, the competition was designed to acquaint the new students with the city of Brotherly Love.
“The scavenger hunt is super fun,” said Finn Schwartz ’16, who grew up in Philadelphia County. “Even though I know the area, I’m still learning about new places. It’s good to get out and just explore the city with some new friends.”
Arriving at Market East station by bus and regional rail, many orientation groups made their first trek to 10th and Arch streets to snap a quick pic of Philadelphia’s famous Chinatown “Friendship Arch.” From there, students made their way either to the Masonic Temple at 12th and Moravian or to Philly Cupcake to indulge in a high fashion cupcake.
En route to Washington Square West to snap a shot of Philadelphia’s Mural Mile, Brad Clark ’16, a New Hampshire native was elated by the energy of the city. “This is a whole new experience for me. I’m not used to this at all. We have a downtown Concord, of course, but it’s nothing like this.”
After naming the man whose likeness tops City Hall, students took their photos at the famous Love Park, dodging a constant stream of wedding parties and skateboarders.
Even for students such as Franscesca Mayr ’16, a Global Media Fashion Studies major from Doylestown, Pa. (a suburb of Philadelphia), participating in the scavenger hunt was a good way to familiarize herself with parts of the city she had never explored before.
The students also perused the international flags—similar to the ones housed on Arcadia’s Glenside campus—along Ben Franklin Parkway.
As Jack Ross ’16, an International Studies major from Bethlehem, Pa, surveyed the flags collection of international flags on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway, he explained he was “going for gold,” hoping to be a proud owner of a new Kindle Fire.
Ross’s teammate Brianna Miller ’16, an Elementary Education major from Nanuet, N.Y., is far more familiar with the Big Apple but said she prefers the smaller, more relaxed feel of Philadelphia. “It feels a little bit more like home.”
After completing all the challenges, the teams reconvened to take over another icon of Philadelphia, Reading Terminal Market, after hours. Provided with $10 gift certificates, students sampled cheese steaks from Carmen’s, Bassett’s famous milkshakes, falafel from the Basic Vegetarian Snack Bar, Burgers from Molly Molloy’s, Jambalaya from Beck’s Cajun Café and of course, Hershel’s East Side’s famous Reuben sandwiches.
The winners of the SCVNGR hunt were announced at the Alumni Ice Cream Social on Monday, Aug. 27. Orientation Group 13 had the highest ranking teams. Each of the following students received $10 Target gift certificates, provided by Student Government Organization: Becky Buteau, Janelle Crilley, Deena Damschroder, Nancy Dennehy, Brittanie Edestrom, James Galassi, Rebecca Hart, Brooks High, Lauren Hoch, Markeeta Holmes, Miranda Holzlein, David Knipprath, Morgan McKenna, Joe McNiff, Passone Nettles, Justin D. Pavido, Greg Schiosberg, Vrunda Shah, Dominick Tumminaro and Danielle White.
Members of the winning team each received brand new Kindle Fires, provided by the Office of the Provost and Enrollment Management. They were Kathryn Ahern, Brooke Barrat, Myranda Cain, Laura Donovan, Raven Eckman and Claire Rankin.