Is This An Unlikely Friendship? Or Is The Infiltration of PONG Afoot?

When ex-PONG President Matt Gunderson met Her Campus Stout’s Campus Correspondent Stephanie Zengler, he couldn’t have known what this small blonde woman would do to his organization. Women were pretty scarce for PONG, and having this women-led organization hang out and collaborate with them for events would be amazing for diversifying their male dominated organization. “What could go wrong?” he thought, for about a week. Now, Matt must leave the organization he loves with a giraffe emoji infested Discord server, pink flags in his social media feeds, as well as his Animal Crossing island. And the question remains: What does Her Campus have to do with gaming? And why does the Her Campus-Stout chapter have a Twitch account?

Over the past week, Her Campus-Stout has been posting articles and memes surrounding our favorite gaming organization on campus, and the gamers within it. Behind the scenes, Discord servers and Twitch streams have been strengthening a bond between two unlikely organizations on campus. An organization of people dedicated to gaming and the friendships that come out of it—and an organization dedicated to empowering women and giving them a platform to showcase their talents. Was this a chance friendship? Or was this something more? Who knows what will happen next semester, when motivations are high, recruitment is higher and Matt Gunderson’s name is no longer listed on any exec boards at UW-Stout. Will PONG's creatives soon have the Her Campus icon above PONG’s in Discord?

The infiltration of PONG has some Her Campus-Stout readers—and even chapter members—confused. And who knows what the future will bring with Her Campus and PONG when the world stops burning around us. Maybe this is just an innocent and fun way to encourage women to enter the vast world of gaming. Or maybe next year, Stout’s gaming community will gather to put their consoles and PCs on pink mouse pads and tables for a LAN organized under a PONG/HC flag. We are so grateful for the friendships built through Her Campus and PONG at Stout, but let it be known that if you don’t start to appreciate the pure joy of Stardew Valley, I will hide your HDMI cables.