Pokemon Go grips Moraine Valley campus

  • Written by Kelly White

The Pokemon craze taking over the nation has also hit Moraine Valley Community College by storm.

At the Aug. 16 Moraine Valley Board meeting, student trustee David Shipyor reported since the game, Pokemon Go, was released in July, there has been an increase in population on campus and not only from students.

“We have noticed a surge from both students and community members visiting campus during non-class time hours this summer to play Pokemon Go,” Shipyor said. “The game has positively encouraged people to come to campus, not only to play the game, but while they are here they also have the opportunity to walk around the campus and see some of the great things Moraine has to offer.”

Pokemon Go is a free-to-play, location-based augmented reality game developed by Niantic for iOS and Android devices. In the game, players use a mobile device's GPS capability to locate, capture, battle and train virtual creatures, called Pokémon, who appear on the screen as if they were in the same real-world location as the player.

In order to attract even more people to campus, Moraine’s Student Life Program, in conjunction with the college’s marketing and creative services department, developed two Pokemon Go days in July to attract even more campus visitors.

The event was held on July 27 and 28 at the Moraine Valley Gateway and Thursday, July 28 in the Moraine Valley Library, both of which were used as Pokemon hot spots.

There are a total of 21 Pokemon lure spots on campus, according to Clare Briner, director of marketing and creative services at Moraine Valley.

“The lure spots are used to attract the virtual creatures,” Briner said.

During the event, students and community members met in the gateway and library and dispersed to lure spots waiting for Pokemon creatures to appear.

Students were also able to better get to know one another, while community members were given the opportunity to visit campus and discuss possible future attendance with Moraine’s student life members who actively participated in the event.

“The event’s purpose was to take advantage of this new entertainment phenomenon in order to outreach to current students, perspective new students, and community members about the many resources and services that moraine Valley has to offer,” Shipyor said. “Essentially it was a creative way to advertise our campus.”

Shipyor admits he himself is an avid Pokemon Go player.

An estimated 40 people attended the first event, with an estimated 30 attending the second, according to Moraine Valley officials.

“It brought a lot of people together here on campus for an event that was not highly publicized,” Briner said. “The game is extremely popular and brings people out to campus. We definitely plan on hosting more Pokemon days.”

Briner has not yet determined when the next Pokemon day will take place. However, when a decision is made, flyers will be placed throughout campus.