Improving teamwork by escaping Zeus

Office of Student Life brings Campus Escapes to Pierce to facilitate teamwork

Rebecca Dickson, Reporter

The darkness of the pitch black room fills the Multipurpose Room of the College Center Building. The group goes completely silent, other than a few excited whispers. Suddenly, a woman’s voice rings out across the rooms.

“Gather here, mortals,” the hooded figure says.

The group slowly attempts to walk towards her. A thump is heard. Someone ran into an empty table.

The group walks over to the voice, attempting to see. The room is completely dark, with the windows blacked out by curtains. The group is warned they have about 30 minutes before Zeus returns and the group is destined to be turned into animals.

“And not those cute, fluffy animals, either,” the hooded figure says.

This is the scene which took place on May 12 from 10-1 p.m. Organized by the Office of Student Life, an escape room was planned by the Interactive Media and Gaming Coordinator.

The event was originally planned for winter quarter, but due to inclimate weather, the event was canceled.

“Some difficulties rescheduling were, just the disappointment,” Madrid said. “You put so much time and effort into something and the just- the weather- something you can’t control comes in and messes up all your plans and your schedule up. But other than that, we fixed the whole thing, like we got it working. I brought it back!”

After the snowpocalypse, Madrid worked to make sure that the event would continue. According to Madrid, she had several students who were excited to participate in winter quarter, but were disappointed to hear that the event was canceled. Because of this, Madrid worked hard to make sure that the event would continue in Spring Quarter.

Campus Escapes was the company Madrid brought to campus. Currently, Campus Escapes has two different escape rooms: The Philosopher and The Mystery on Mount Olympus. Madrid chose the second one for Pierce to play.

“The Greek room just kinda caught my attention, because I personally like Greek mythology and stuff like that,” Madrid said. “So , I was like that seems kind of interesting. I wonder how that would pan out?”

Madrid spent a large part of her time planning the advertising for the event.  By putting up fliers and handing out handbills, creating sandwich boards advertising the event and spreading the news of the event, Madrid estimates that 40-50 people attended.

Huy Nguyen, a student who attended the event, says he heard about it through this method.

“I (saw) the poster,” Nguyen said. “I just expect it to be fun, even if we screw up or something.”

The escape room was stationed in the Multipurpose room on campus. In the back of the multipurpose room sat several puzzle challenges, including using UV lights to find hidden codes, lock boxes full of clues for other puzzles, a moth which, when lit up revealed a secret number, a hidden book with an iPod which had a game that, once solved, would roll a ball down a chamber to find a key.

Even the light sources were part of the game.

In order to find any of the objects in the room to start, team members had to work together to find flashlights of different strengths. These flashlights could be found in many locations, including in dishes, under puzzles and more.

According to Madrid, a main reason that she wanted to bring the escape room was to promote teamwork. Madrid said she has learned teamwork while working in the Office of Student Life. People who participated in the game also thought the game helped with promoting teamwork.

David Duc Hoang Lai was one of these students.

“I just think this is fun, and I want to challenge myself a bit,” Lai said. “(It requires) a lot of teamwork (in order to solve the puzzles”)”.

Regardless of whether the group won or lost the game, they still were able to hold up signs for a group photo. The signs had sayings such as “We Won!” or “We lost, and it’s all my fault”.

Student Advocacy Senator Nadine Napashqwa said the OSL liked providing events like these.

“(Events like these), especially one that is more expensive, that’s what the Office of Student Life is all about- providing access to students (to things they otherwise might not be able to participate in),” Napashqwa said.

Ultimately, Madrid thought the event was a success.

“We just really love it when people come to our events,” Madrid says. “And hopefully next year’s team, people will still be coming to our events. (We don’t put these on) just because it’s our job, (and) we have to, we put them on because we want to and we want to provide students a way to just get out of the whole ‘school, school, school’ (mindset, and to create) a place (for students) to have fun.”

The Puyallup Post is the award-winning news media of Pierce College Puyallup in Puyallup, Washington. Copyright The Puyallup Post 2018. Find us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Youtube @thepuyalluppost

Rebecca Dickson

Improving teamwork by escaping Zeus

by Rebecca Dickson time to read: 3 min