Story by Hannah Kelsker
Photos Courtesy Josh Schoenblatt
Domenic Lamberti, a junior law, politics and society and sociology double major and SAE member, helped coordinate with the organization because the owner is a close family friend.
Lamberti said the fraternity raised between $3,000 and $4,000 for the foundation.
The week’s events included T-shirt sales, a watermelon-eating contest, bedtime stories with the sororities, play-time with the dogs and an auction during Parents and Family Weekend.
“We were really impressed by not only how (the organization) liked us being a part of it but how much they enjoyed getting involved at Drake,” Lamberti said. “They enjoy being here a lot. And they make that evident, not just by their attendance, but by their attitude as well.”
Puppy Jake Foundation dogs are trained to help military veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder and mobility issues.
The foundation has played a role in multiple events on campus.
Last spring, they visited for the Dog Days of Finals, so students could play with dogs between study hours.
Junior politics major Josh Schoenblatt said he got the idea to organize a puppy party during finals because scientific studies have shown that animals help to relieve stress and are beneficial to long-term health.
“Well for the most part, everyone loves puppies so you really can’t go wrong with it. And a lot of students miss their animals,” Schoenblatt said. “Especially near the end of the school year when people have their minds in other places and sometimes just having a spot to relax for a couple of hours is good.”
Daniel Scheetz, a junior music theory and music education double major, said he heard about the organization’s Dog Days of Finals last year on the poster in a residence hall from the Student Senate.
“I thought it was a lot of fun. It was kind of a nice distraction from finals,” Scheetz said. “It got a lot of different groups of people out that you usually wouldn’t see those same people at the same event, so it was good for that reason.”
Scheetz said he thought the Dog Days of Finals was well done, but the space outside was a little too small for all the people and all the dogs.
“If they had a bigger fenced-in area it would have worked better, just in making the dogs more comfortable,” Scheetz said.
Schoenblatt said there will be another Dog Days of Finals in December, and it will be indoors. Porterhouse and Drake President David Maxwell’s dogs are invited to the puppy party.
Schoenblatt said he hopes this puppy party will turn into a tradition.
“I think my favorite part is probably the first day near the end. It’s just when all the students start coming,” Schoenblatt said. “They don’t say anything. Their faces just light up. You know just by looking at their faces and some of the pictures that I have that they’re beyond ecstatic, and this is the highlight of their year.”