Classes have officially begun but that does not mean the fun has to stop. CSUN’s Matafest has become an on-campus tradition. The festivities bring together new and returning students to meet and learn of what the campus has to offer, all while enjoying good food and listening to great music.
“Matafest is the USU official welcome event and open house,” events manager Shanell Tyus said. “It is our first event of the semester where we focus on making sure students understand that with their USU fee they pay entitles them to a lot of great services and programs,” said Tyus.
The event, which is located right in front of the USU on Aug. 26, has two separate sections varying from informational tables to entertainment.
During the first section, which took place from 11a.m. to 2 p.m., students were able to meet the representatives from each department. The selection for students varied, from the Student Recreation Center to the Pride Center or the computer lab and the most anticipated of them all, the Oasis wellness center, which opened Aug. 24.
“Every year the USU puts on a festival called Matafest which basically shows all the students the different departments the campus offers” said Grecia Lopez, student representative of the computer lab. “Our table is giving students information as to what we offer,” continued Lopez, “Many students do use the computer lab but the majority aren’t aware that we give out 20 free pages each day.”
The first day of school can seem either overwhelming or over-the-hills exciting. The Matafest is a great opportunity to bring the students together for a day full of fun. New students are able to make friends and become familiar with the campus and returning students are able reconnect and get information on programs that are either new to the campus, like the Oasis Center, or that they were interested in before but never got the chance to get involved.
“The first week of school is one of the most exciting for students whether they are a freshman new to the campus or returning,” said Tyus. “So we want to get people into the union and for them to understand what the union is and what they are entitled to as well as how these services can help them on their academic journey,” says Tyus, “All we want to do is get people in so they know what’s available to them.”
With the theme, layout and activities being credited to USU student lead Trevor Cole many students not only were pleased with this years Matafest, but also noticed changed in how the event was ran.
“I think they have better tactics to get you,” senior Isabel Pena said while pointing at her Snickers bar with the career centers location and website printed on it. “This year people are more open to talking and getting though tables was much quicker. They got straight to the point.”
Whereas new freshmen were blown away about not only the various departments the campus offers but the friendly atmosphere the campus of CSUN has grown to have.
“I love this because it so big but the variety and the areas I can get involved with, its just crazy, the information is very flexible whenever I ask for help people are very nice,” said freshman Ester Avagyan. “I have gotten all of the information I have wanted so far,” said Avagyan.
While the students went on to strip down the tents and close the tables that was not the end of the event. Matafest would continue from 4p.m. to 7 p.m. with more food, games and more fun, focusing on entertaining students after a long days work.
However, the celebration doesn’t end here with many more school spirited events. Including the biggest of them all, Matador nights, Tyus reassures the students that this year will be a great year for both academics and school spirit.