Anyone at Mendel Field late Friday afternoon would agree that the turnout for the Involvement Fair was incredible and almost overwhelming. The excitement on the faces of all the club leaders and students wanting to participate was a genuine relief after a full year of masks and necessary COVID-19 regulations.
This was the first in-person involvement fair for both freshmen and sophomores, and the enthusiasm throughout the crowd was very apparent due to this return to normalcy in annual Villanova traditions.
With such a wide variety of clubs filling up more than 200 different tables, there was no shortage of categories that might catch students’ interest.
For those in the nursing school, MSNO, also known as the Multicultural Student Nurses Organization, is a great shared space for relating to students with similar academic goals. This club was formed last year with the goal of creating an outlet for nursing majors from the moment they step on campus.
Another academic-oriented group that is open to students of all majors is the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE). During their meetings, members discuss different structures on our campus, including how the tunnel connecting the main and west campus was built, and other construction related topics.
More culturally based clubs are also prevalent on campus. The Black Student Union (BSU) covers topics in modern day Black culture and hosts two to three events throughout the year. It also hosts cookouts for back-to-school and the end of the year.
Additionally, there are clubs for pre-med, pre-law, pre-vet and other career paths that a student might be interested in learning more about. Business societies, singing clubs and of course the service organizations were well represented at the fair.
Another highlighted section of the involvement fair was club sports, which are once again returning to campus after their mandatory coronavirus hiatus. One club that stood out was the judo club. Its setup at the club fair was particularly unique because members were teaching students how to throw people. Of course, this activity was very safe, but the hands-on experiences participants had was an exciting adrenaline rush.
Being able to interact with these club members face to face, and even participate briefly in what inspires these students, was truly refreshing after not being able to participate in any of these types of events as a freshman in the 2020-21 school year.
With so many outlets now to cover a variety of interests, there is hope that both freshmen and sophomores can pursue some of their other passions that are not academically based. These extracurriculars offer an outlet for students to explore new interests or make new friends. The bonds that are created by shared interests are some of the most important that a college student makes during their time on campus.