Siena students wrapped up their first week of classes and started their weekends by attending the Club Fair on Saturday, Sept. 7, 2018. Over 90 clubs and organizations set up tables around the academic quad and promoted membership with posters, giveaway, and sign-up sheets. With Friday’s temperature reaching almost 80 degrees, Saints eagerly lined up to get complimentary treats from a local ice cream truck and enjoyed live music as they strolled around the quad.
The Club Fair has always been immensely popular among Saints; it is the first major event of every new semester and shows first-year students and commuters how much there is to do on campus. With clubs ranging from academic to performance to service-oriented, the fair offered opportunities for all students to get involved at Siena. The large number of clubs also encouraged students to sign up for multiple groups. Erica Vasquez ’20 enjoyed the Club Fair and joined the Psychology Club, Study Abroad Club and Pep Band. “I had fun seeing all the clubs Siena had to offer. And the free ice cream was a bonus,” Vasquez joked.
The Club Fair also gives organizations the opportunity to promote their group by answering questions, providing sign-up information for interested students and sharing all the fun activities that their club offers. Nabila Akhter ’19, president of the Asian Student Association, praised the success of the club fair. “It went really well! We got over two pages of sign-ups,” she said. Akhter also encouraged students of all backgrounds to join the Asian Student Association. The ASA hosts a number of popular events each semester, including the Mid-Autumn Festival, Fall Fusion and Holi.
Clubs are able to recruit new members through the fair as well. Kayleigh Filkins ’21, treasurer of the PRIDE-Gay Straight Alliance, encouraged students to join: “We are looking for more allies, and it’s a safe space if you’re not out.” The PRIDE-GSA offers a safe, supportive environment to students of all gender and sexual identities. The club puts on an annual shadow casting of “The Rocky Horror Picture Show” in late October, a fun and lively event where performers act out the movie in front of a screen while the movie plays, and audience participation is strongly encouraged. The PRIDE-GSA has weekly Monday meetings in Siena Hall 308 at 9 p.m.
There are endless benefits to getting involved in college. Clubs help students meet new people, develop leadership and communication skills, explore their passions or learn something new. For first-year students, joining a club can help them adjust to college life and living away from home for the first time. Clubs also work as a stress reliever for students, giving them a break from academic stress and encouraging them to attend entertaining events.
There are professional benefits to joining clubs as well. Being involved can provide networking opportunities and assist students in finding internships their junior or senior year. Joining clubs builds students’ resumes and shows future employers that their candidate is hardworking and able to multitask.
The Club Fair is held at the beginning of each semester and shows Saints all the exciting extracurriculars Siena has to offer. If students would like more information, a list of Siena’s clubs, organizations, and events can be found at www.saintsconnect.siena.edu. Students can also check the Daily Digest for updates about club meetings and events.