A quick conversation can get students access to mountain bikes to use on Hayden Park’s trails and, come spring, paddleboards or kayaks to take on Baw Beese Lake. Students manning the desk can also direct students to Hayden Park’s new frisbee golf course and complementary driving range.
Although the Student Activities Office offers many answers to the complaint that “there’s nothing to do in Hillsdale,” many recreational resources are underused, Assistant Director of Student Activities Hank Prim said.
“I think the disconnect starts with the fact that we are a very relational campus,” Prim said. “We can put as many posters up as we want, send out as many campus-wide emails, and put it all over social media, but at the end of the day, if the majority of people don’t know about something, they’re not going to spread the word.”
Few people understand the struggle of small-town boredom — and its many possible solutions — better than the alumni who direct the student activities office. They’re always available, and they can connect students to campus opportunities through the Student Activities Board, campus clubs, dorm residence life, or the GOAL Program.
Hillsdale’s Chamber of Commerce also publishes a complete guide of all the things to do in Hillsdale, and students can pick up a copy at the SAB office.
Prim said the Source, though students write it off as a freshmen-only event, is often used to alert students to new developments, such as the frisbee golf course.
SAB also has a Snapchat and Instagram (@hillsdale_sab for both) and following its social media is a way to keep up to date on the activities offered to students, including weekday SAB events.
All these resources are accessible simply by talking to the desk attendant in the union.
“Before coming to Hillsdale, I think people are used to a lot of barriers before they can get things,” Prim said. “Our office’s goal is to chop down as many of those barriers to make things as accessible as possible.”