Finding Responsible and Entertaining Activities on Kampus (FREAKS) is a Department of Public Health-supported program intended to improve the campus community/student life. Currently, FREAKS has started the first initiative – FREAKS Boardgaming Club. Future endeavors will build on the idea of providing additional activities student desire and demonstrate continued attendance.

Why boardgaming as the first initiative ?

Research shows that social and emotional development plays an important part in student’s academic success and health. Unlike IQ, emotional competence can be nurtured and developed, and is a key factor in physical and mental health, social competence, academic achievement and other aspects in the personal and social development of children and young people. Playing games in the classroom and as a relaxing weekend activity can teach students how to have (and maintain) a better attitude, stimulate motivation and improve social skills. Playing games will teach students to deal with feelings, identify needs, formulate demands, listen and communicate efficiently, take responsibility, and think creatively and positively. Further, playing board games with your friends and/or family or in your classroom is a great way to bond and exercise some of that competitive spirit in a fun and healthy manner, while giving each student the opportunity to work on their emotional education.

What types of games?

We have a wide variety of games. Party, Strategy, Dexterity, Kids, Dice-based, Card-based, Sports, Racing and War-based games are always available for ages starting as early as 5 years old. Most of the games are referred to as Euro’s. These German-style board games are a broad class of tabletop games that generally have simple rules, short to medium playing times (20 minutes to 3 hours), indirect player interaction and attractive physical components. Most of the games emphasize strategy, downplay luck and conflict, lean towards economic rather than military themes, and usually keep all the players in the game until it ends. German-style games are sometimes contrasted with American-style games, which generally involve more luck, conflict, and drama.

The club meets in the Student Union every Friday night starting at 5:00 pm during the semester and often over breaks and in the summer. Additional information about upcoming events can be found on our Facebook page.

We welcome everyone to come and play. Bring your friends, bring your kids and bring yourself. We are always up for another game!

Email me for more information:

Faculty FREAK

W. Gregory Thatcher, MSPH, PhD
Assistant Professor
Department of Public Health
California State University, Fresno