A.T. Still University’s School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona (ATSU-SOMA) recently hosted Hogwarts Day, a creative event designed to ease students’ stress while they prepared for final exams. ATSU-SOMA faculty, led by Victoria Bryant, PhD, assistant professor of genetics and molecular biology, planned Harry Potter-themed activities, décor, and costumes.
The magic began early in the month, when ATSU-SOMA students received an acceptance letter to the “ATSU-SOMA School of Witchcraft & Wizardry.” On the day of the event, students were divided into four houses: Gryffindor, Slytherin, Hufflepuff, and Ravenclaw. True to the magical world of Harry Potter, they even donned a sorting hat for the ceremony. The houses rotated through stations that aligned magical subjects like potions and care of magical creatures to relevant material on upcoming final exams.
Faculty members dressed up as famous characters from the books like Albus Dumbledore, Mad-Eye Moody, and Severus Snape. ATSU-SOMA Dean Jeffrey Morgan, DO, MA, FACOI, CS, dressed as minister of magic, Cornelius Fudge.
In the afternoon, the houses competed in a Quidditch tournament, involving broomsticks, quaffles, and a golden snitch. Team Gryffindor won the coveted Quidditch Cup.
The event was a huge hit with ATSU-SOMA students.
“It was the most fun and interactive final oral exam I’ve ever had in my life,” says Samuel Grover, OMS I. “All of our subjects were associated with classes from Hogwarts, and most of our professors even dressed up. Thank you to all who helped make it a success.”
“I am very thankful for the time our faculty and staff put into this event to make it such an unforgettable and magical experience,” adds Janae Rasmussen, OMS I. “It was very helpful to get insight on high-yield topics for our final while also having fun playing Quidditch.”
The event was about more than Polyjuice Potion, boggarts, and butterbeer. The activities reinforced important academic concepts that will help students succeed on final exams and beyond.
“Many students told me they were very stressed and overwhelmed prior to this event, and it really helped them relieve stress and prepare for finals,” says Dr. Bryant. “I feel like they will remember this day for years to come, long after they’ve left campus. Events like this make ATSU-SOMA a unique school.”