• Jonathan Dusza

Petey Points: Canisius’s New System to Reward Engagement

Canisius College is implementing a new system intended to allow students to keep track of, encourage and reward student involvement at events around campus this year.

The platform, called Griffnet, allows students to sign into their accounts and look at both clubs they are a part of and other clubs that they are not a part of. Each club will have contact information available on Griffnet. A Griffnet mobile app is expected to be launched within a few months.

In addition to clubs, Griffnet will also keep track of events that students participate in on campus and reward students for going to events. When a student goes to an event or joins a club, they will be rewarded with Petey Points, which can be redeemed for real prizes including merchandise as well as tickets to events throughout Buffalo, such as Sabres games and performances at Shea’s.

The amount of Petey Points a student receives per event varies. Events that focus more on education, like leadership or spiritual events, will earn more points than events that are solely for fun. Some events that are of even greater importance, like the talk regarding suicide prevention on September 22, earn students more than can be earned at the educational events. Regarding the suicide prevention talk, Director of Student Engagement Jason Francey said, “I think that it’s such a critical event that we want students to go out to… so we want to reward them accordingly.”

As of now the Petey Point economy is still not set in stone. The current price of items for sale in the Petey Point store is based on the early results of the new system, but as the system gets more use, the prices of things in the store will adjust accordingly. “We tried to make it fair,” Francey said of the store, “so that a student should realistically be able to get something before the end of the semester – and possibly multiple things.”

So far, 180,000 Petey Points are in the Petey Point economy, and 48% of students have points in their credit.

Francey talked about his goal to gamify involvement around campus. “Involvement is about having fun,” he said, “so let’s add a game to it that we’re all playing. … it adds an extra layer of fun and competition to things.”

Involvement is at the heart of the matter for Francey. “When you’re getting involved,” he said, “you’re nourishing your mind, body and spirit, but you can also get a tangible takeaway if you’re involved enough. …My hope is that this will create a culture of engagement.”


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