Club Fair sparks interest in activities on campus
September 5, 2008
Filed under Archives
Safe sex goody bags, fresh peaches and a whirling hypnotism machine were just some of the attractions at the biannual Club Fair on Aug. 27. Near-torrential rains drove the event inside to Sternberger Auditorium, where tri-fold boards perched atop tables. Despite the inclement weather, the turnout was still good. “We probably missed a few people but with the student organizations telling people and getting information to the first-year classes we had a fair amount of people,” said Director of Student Leadership and Engagement Erica Cosentino. Thirty-seven of Guilford’s 40 official student organizations were represented at the fair. In addition to the established groups, three new clubs were recruiting members as well. The Parkour Club is for people interested in the French “sport” best described as urban gymnastics.
“Our mission is to promote better health on campus and to help students overcome obstacles both mentally and physically,” said sophomore Julian Nipper. “We started because Public Safety told us we weren’t allowed to run and jump over certain objects, so we decided to become a club. They said we were damaging property and putting ourselves in danger. And they called us stupid too.”
Unlike the Parkour Club, The Quaker isn’t technically a new club. After four years of dormancy, staff member Aimee White wants to revive Guilford’s yearbook. “It fell by the wayside,” said White, who works in the Office of Communications and Marketing. “Alumni relations are adamant about getting it back. This is an archive of what happens during the year. I’d hate to see people miss out on that.”
The Muslim and Arab Student Association (MASA) is also a reincarnation of a former organization. MASA, which is working on becoming an official club, aims to present an accurate image of Arabs and Muslims and as well as help Arab and Muslim students build community. “People misunderstand the terms Arab and Muslim-who we are and what we do,” said first-year Mohammad Asad.
“Because we’re a minority it’s nice to know who comes from the same background as we do, to know who to turn to,” said first-year Dima Hanania.
MASA also wants to work on the relationship and dialogue between Muslims and Arabs and the rest of the student body. “We are trying to create friendship and a team between Arabs and the Guilford community,” Asad said.
New organizations weren’t the only ones striving to recruit members and spark interest. This year, the Photo Club has to work extra hard in order to retain their status on campus. They were placed on probation for several reasons, including failing to attend mandatory Inter-Club Council (ICC) meetings last year. “(Our previous president) never informed (us) that ICC meetings exist,” said sophomore and co-president Mara Karell. As a result, Senate capped their budget at $1,000.
“We want them to take being a student organization seriously,” said Cosentino. “The idea is that you’re on probation, to send a message of responsibility. You need to get back to where you need to be, and the next step is to not be a recognized organization on campus.”
Despite their limited budget, the Photo Club has some exciting things coming up. “We have lots of workshops, like how to make your own pinhole camera,” said Karell. They are also planning a weekend photographic excursion to Cape Lookout on Sept. 19.
Other clubs also have interesting events in the works. Hispanic Heritage Month begins Sept. 15, and Hispanos Unidos de Guilford (HUG) plans on having each week focus on a different Latin American country. Pride is working on setting up a “drag-off” against UNCG at some time this semester, although no dates have been set yet.
The purpose of the club fair is to get people interested and active in organizations on campus. Goodies such as free condoms and fruit weren’t the only drawing points of the fair. “I want to feel more connected to the school,” said sophomore Justin Big Hair, a transfer student from the Institute of American Indian Arts. “I’m excited to see what’s going on, look at activities they’re going to do.