Library hosts events for International Gaming Week

Shannan Lojeski, Assistant News Editor

   Let the games begin.

   This was the slogan used for Andersen Library’s International Games Week, which was hosted from Nov. 5 to Nov. 9. Previously known as International Gaming Day since 2007, the event was extended this year to appeal to a wider audience at the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater.

   Sponsored by the American Library Association, International Games Week is an initiative intended to showcase the recreational, educational and social tools that gaming can offer.

   “I’ve had the opportunity to be involved with International Gaming Day since things got started back in 2007,” Andersen Library director Paul Waelchli said. “Games and gameplay remain a powerful tool for some of the central work of libraries, promoting learning and building community.”

   Events during the week included life-size gaming, Club EdIT, Grab N’ Game and a Super Smash Bros. tournament in Warhawk Alley. The challenge for establishing a renewed weeklong event was proudly accepted by Sarell Martin, the Public Relations & Outreach coordinator for Andersen Library.

   “International Games Week is another great opportunity to enhance the experience at Andersen while seeking partnerships on campus to continue to build a sense of community,” Martin said. “Our expectation is to draw both the gaming public, and those interested in having some study-break fun.”

   In planning the week’s events, Martin collaborated with Graduate Student for Warhawk Alley Mike Aiello and the Super Smash Bros. Club on campus to offer a gaming tournament Nov. 6 at the Warhawk Alley’s TV-gaming area. For a small entry free, students could play in Smash Wii U tournament where the top finishers were awarded prizes from both Andersen and Warhawk Alley.

    The Super Smash Bros. Club values gaming and the positive effects it has on UW-W’s campus community and society in general.

   Jacob Petersen, president of the Super Smash Bros. org hoped that students would take time out of their busy schedules during this past week to participate in International Games Week.

   “I’ve seen how games can help people create lasting friendships, work on problem-solving skills, and help develop how to work as a team here on campus,” Petersen said. “For example, our org’s record was a tournament featuring up to 60 participants with some coming from as far as Oshkosh and Chicago to participate. We’ve also done charitable work and hosted a food drive last year to those in need near the holidays.”

   The International Games Week initiative is set to continue annually and bring more competition and partnership through gameplay at UW-Whitewater in years to come.