Hundreds of freshmen and student leaders from various clubs and organizations packed a row of display tables as part of the Clubs and Organizations Fair held during new student orientation sessions between Aug. 16 and 25.
Student leaders set up tables full of information to attract incoming freshmen. Many of the student leaders said they had a good time, and that the events went on without any complications or problems.
Many said this year’s Clubs and Organizations Fair was a lot easier to participate in because established requirements for what had to be done to host a table had changed since 2004.
“Every day, at least one member of the club has to attend a one-hour workshop that explains the rules and regulations of the fair, before the fair begins,” said Justin Carvalho of the Young Democrats of Northridge.
Last year, several clubs and organizations were not allowed to set up for some of the earliest days of the Clubs and Organizations Fair because they had not attended a mandatory training workshop held on just one day prior to the start of orientation. The Young Democrats, Hillel, Black Student Union, and Movimiento Estudiantil Chicano/a de Aztlan did not attend this mandatory workshop, among others.
“It’s not like last year, where you only had to attend the one day that the orientation coordinators scheduled the workshop on,” said Marcus Afzali, another member of the Young Democrats of Northridge. “And if you didn’t attend, you couldn’t have a table. It was a lot easier this year, and the orientation coordinators were a lot clearer with the matter. A lot more professional, even.”
The first requirement a club or organization must meet to have a table at the fair is being chartered through the Matador Involvement Center.
The second requirement is that a club or organization must attend a workshop where they are briefed on rules and fair practices, held by orientation coordinators.
This year, the workshop was held every day for an hour before the fair.
Some student leaders attributed the improvements to more communication between the MIC and the various clubs and organizations.
“The reason for last year was that the MIC wasn’t as clear about the mandatory workshop as they were this year,” said Alicia Cohen, a senior fellow with the Jewish Campus Service Corp. “They kept notifying the clubs that the workshop was a must. Because of this, we were stronger and more aware than we were last year.”
“There was a lot more publicity and attention in having to attend this workshop, which went over the rules and regulations of being able to table during the fair,” Afzali said.
“The reason why the workshop was changed this year to being daily was because it’s a big event,” said Melissa Bayol, orientation coordinator. “It helps bring about improvement, as each day goes on. It helps us debrief the clubs on what went on the previous day. This is a lot more useful, since each day there are different people that come by for orientation.”
Mark Solleza can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.