West Chester University hosted their biannual Involvement Fair on the academic quad from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 8.
Over 200 student-led organizations lined the sidewalks surrounding the quad hoping to meet the students of West Chester University. The fair provides an opportunity for all organizations, big and small, to advertise their presence in the WCU community.
Jackie Aliotta, Assistant Director of Student Leadership and Involvement, enjoys, “seeing the student organizations representing themselves well at the tables, [getting] excited…talking about their organization and trying to get people recruited.”
The fall Involvement Fair is an opportunity for current students to join together and help integrate the new students into the West Chester community.
Sophia Pazmino, secretary of Best Buddies, believes, “It’s definitely a way to connect with a lot of people and find your interests.”
Pazmino’s statement is reinforced by LinkedIn blogger Sydney Abbott who said that “student organizations bring together people of similar interests—people who you might not have met if you had not joined.”
Upperclassmen find that allowing incoming freshmen the opportunity to discover their groups with peers who have common interests creates a happier and more involved student body.
“It makes me really proud to be a West Chester student, honestly, just because…even seeing everyone out right now, they’re all so proud of their organizations,” said Panhellenic community member Katie Ryan. “It makes me proud to be a part of such a diverse community.”
Many WCU newbies were in attendance like freshman student Courtney Rothman. She believes that “[West Chester University] caters to absolutely everyone who wants to do something.”
Rothman and many other freshmen students hope to find organizations on campus that best fit their interests.
“It’s really important that students get to meet the officers of clubs that they’re interested in,” said Malory Gallagher, Goshen Hall Resident Assistant. “It’s great to know what’s available on campus.”
This exposure to clubs with various subject areas presents new students with the chance to branch out. Freshman Stephanie Olsen is looking forward to “just meeting new people, trying new things and going out of my comfort zone.”
The fall Involvement Fair marks the beginning for many here on campus, but it also brings back a lot of memories for upperclassmen. Many seniors recall attending this fair as new students and how they have continued to represent their organizations since.
“It’s my favorite part of the year in general; the fall Involvement Fair is amazing,” said Pazmino. “As a freshman, I spent an hour and a half walking around looking at everything.”
When asked if she had any advice, Aliotta said, “For the first-year students, I would encourage them to really make the most out of their time here and to get involved right from the beginning by joining clubs and organizations, develop leadership skills [and] get involved in our leadership programs because these are the skills employers are looking for. Also, being involved is going to make their time here at West Chester University so much fun!”
Erin McFeeters is a fourth-year student majoring in communication studies with a minor in journalism. She can be reached at EM857951@wcupa.edu.