Brick by brick, piece by piece, immersing itself onto the university’s campus under the broad misconception of being child’s play, this organization is certainly nothing to be toyed with.
Often heavily associated with hyperactive children and subtle nostalgia, LEGO’s as you know it has recently transformed into a plastic building block for the prime to a coping mechanism activity for the millennial.
Recently morphing this concept, is the new active organization, LEGO Club. Initially integrating itself onto the campus community during April of 2019, by the likes of junior and Founder of the organization, Madeline Heimburg, as well as by Adviser and Assistant Professor of German in the Department of English and Modern Languages, Dr. Sarah Varela have collectively created a space that embraces creativity and originality, at the expense of a healthy mental state.
President Heimburg stated, “the purpose of the club is to create a place for people to express themselves freely through the creation of Legos and to meet other people who are also trying to find that same purpose. There’s a lot of clubs focused on doing things actively such as volunteering, but I also think it’s important for students to have a place to relax and to unwind as mental health has such a big impact on students and adults, so having someplace to let your mental health kind of heal itself is incredibly important.”
Contrary to popular belief, Legos are a staple piece for many childhoods, but these tiny plastic figures are not solely reserved for children.
Though stress relieving and fun, Legos seem to be misunderstood at times as people question the childish aspect of the toy, yet, Legos are not a kid toy it’s an anyone toy.
Regularly meeting every Tuesday at 6:30 P.M. at Dr. Varela’s residence, the close-knit club of nearly ten individuals, manages to offer a diverse range of students the opportunity to revisit a childhood toy with the reality sensation of growing networks and friendships through a curative activity.
“What I like about this organization is the chance to, not necessarily be childish, but allowing ourselves to play. As a professor, I try to hold high academic standards, but I also recognize that every once in a while, you need to stop and breathe,” said Dr. Varela.
Concurrently providing an eerie sense of comfort and relaxation, these plastic building blocks have been revisited by young adults, but in particular college students of Longwood University.
Freshman Ben Loucas stated, “I think the problem that every freshman faces is worrying about making new friends, and to all of a sudden have an organization like this, where it’s welcoming is a great feeling. This organization is definitely beneficial to the campus as Legos have that therapeutic value to them. The fact that you can create something, without worry if it’s being graded—it’s stress relieving to just build without rules or boundaries, and there’s certainly no rubrics.”
However, when the club is not indulging in building models, they are building relationships. Therefore, this creativity and community influenced organization doesn’t merely focus on free building, but to also provide a campus presence, especially with on campus organizations.
Now, with the intention to gain access beyond the whole campus community, President Heimburg alluded to possibly working with the Farmville community within the next year or two, to explore the benefits of being able to freely create with everyone of all ages, but in particular the local public school system.
That said, LEGO Club is evidently more than an after-school activity, “our relaxed environment creates a safe space for a lot of folks. It just allows people to destress and open up,” stated senior Jesse Plichta-Kellar.
With that, used as a symbolic representation of life, Legos are used as building blocks into creating and connecting individuals together, but you may be wondering how that exactly applies to life?
Although Lego kits come with instructions, life certainly doesn’t, in which LEGO club allows students to navigate through life via intertwining blocks.
For information on how to get involved, please contact LEGO Club via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow them via Instagram legoclub.longwood for consistent updates.