Baylor virtual reality club celebrates its first event

JR Diehl participates in Baylor's virtual reality club's game night. MJ Routh | Multimedia Journalist

By Micaela Freeman | Staff Writer

The Baylor Virtual Reality Club, founded earlier this fall and chartered in January, hosted its first event of the year, Game Night with Society of Women Engineers (SWE) and Theta Tau Monday night in Moody.

The event allowed students, members of SWE, Theta Tau and Baylor Virtual Reality club to experience the effects of virtual reality and to showcase difference interests within virtual reality. The event brought in many different types of VR gaming systems and showed that VR can be for anyone.

Dallas sophomore Sean Bolonien, who is the Project Manager of the Development team for Baylor’s VR club said that the event allowed students to come together and experience VR for the first time.

“Tonight and VR are about more than just playing video games,” Bolonien said. “To me, it’s the future of interacting with digital media in a more emotional manner.”

The event offered snacks, different genres of virtual reality games, and interaction with officers from SWE, Theta Tau, and Baylor VR club.

Many members said they enjoyed the night because not only did they get to interact with members from SWE and Theta Tau, but also have a stress free Monday night.

Tomball Junior Baylor VR club member Andrew Case said that the event created a relaxing and enjoyable environment as well as exposing virtual reality to different types of people.

“We tried to make a fun environment not just for virtual reality but for enjoyment, too,” Case said. “Virtual reality allows for totally different types of people to interact with others in a fun environment.”

Both Case and Bolonien said that they hope the night exposed VR to not only engineers but also students of other majors, too.

“We are trying to branch out to other clubs,” Bolonien said. “Fostering that comoradie in other Baylor engineering related clubs was definitely one of the goals for the event.”

SWE also brought members to the event, and Baton Rouge, La. freshman Catherine Ledoux said she was excited for the new VR club at Baylor.

As part of the freshman council for SWE, Ledoux said that partnering with the VR club for this event offered opportunities for both clubs.

“Tonight was Baylor VR’s game night and virtual reality is super new at Baylor and so it was great getting attention for what they do and recruiting for SWE,” Ledoux said.

Ledoux also said, as someone who has never done VR, that the event was for people who wanted to have fun and experience something new.

“It was a good way to come together over something was that just really fun,” Ledoux said. “It was a great way to interact with other engineers and students.”

Social Chair and co-graphic designer for Baylor VR, Rockwall sophomore Alexandra Barnett, said that the goal of the event was to bring interest of VR together and she was excited about the experience herself.

Barnett also said she is excited to be a founding officer for the club and that it gets her involved with Baylor as both an art student and an advocate for virtual reality on campus.

“It’s really interesting that I’m involved with a new club at Baylor so that also gets me involved with my school,” Barnett said. “I feel like being a founding officer sets the bar for everyone who is coming after us and we just hope to do a great job and bring people together over something I think is really cool.”