Student involvement fair centers campus clubs and organizations

Last semester, the biannual Student Involvement Fair was held outside in The Grove. This semester, around 80 student clubs, organizations and campus resources were spread out across Friends Hall, the second floor hallway of the Student Center and the Alumni Lounges to recruit new members or get students involved in campus life.

“The involvement fair is extremely important. It’s a great opportunity for both new students and returning students to learn all about the different opportunities available, whether it be a club you’re interested in, a program you might be able to apply to, a department that might be useful and its resources. It really opens your eyes to all the different great things that are going on around campus,” said Amanda Riehl, the assistant director for student involvement at the Center for Student Involvement (CSI).

RCTV is open to more than film majors. Photo by Matthew Wikfors.

Grace Saltalamacchia talked about getting students involved from a club perspective as an officer of RCTV.

“We talk about movies and TV shows and we also like to watch them and talk about them. We also have the 52 Hour Film Festival and we do it every semester. It’s the most popular event we do, and we try to talk about it a lot to get students to join our club, especially in the winter when not much goes on,” she said.

When it comes to bringing new and old members together, Saltalamacchia said the first step is deciding a time based on when as many members as possible are available. Then, she said they break the ice with fun games to help members bond with each other. She also said polls are also helpful to get a sense of what students want to see more of with the club.

Alpha Kappa Psi, a professional business fraternity, helps students get involved on campus through forming professional connections and volunteer service.

“We offer a lot of connections to many different students and outlets on campus. We offer internships and many ways to connect with faculty if new students are looking for connections. We also have many different service opportunities through donations and volunteering on campus. The whole fraternity itself is very involved on campus,” said Brian Colucci, Alpha Kappa Psi’s secretary and recruitment chair.

“The peer program is a really great way to get involved,” said Danielle Pragdat, a peer facilitator and peer facilitation intern. “If you’re a transfer student, you can absolutely sign up to be a peer facilitator. You really get to bond with other people in the program and meet a lot of new people through our training week and monthly meetings.”

Freshman Nic Rota said the involvement fair “helps students find their niche and students they want to hang out with.” Rota said he came to join some student clubs in order to make new friends and find his space on campus.

Rebecca Bleich, a sophomore, is part of several clubs and said she attended the involvement fair on Jan. 19 looking to join more clubs.

“I met most of my friends from going to meetings and doing events and everything,” she said when asked about the importance of getting involved on campus. “I think it’s very important.”

Students are encouraged to get involved, and they can research clubs by visiting the  CSI website or scrolling through the groups on Archway, which each have a full list of student clubs and organizations

“CSI welcomes all conversations and questions that students have about getting involved on campus,” Riehl said. “If students are interested in something maybe the college doesn’t provide or doesn’t have a specific club or area that focuses on that, we would love to have a conversation on that.”

Featured photo by Matthew Wikfors