By Zach Taber, Staff Writer
With student’s returning to campus and classes beginning, many have been excited for things to return to normal. However, with COVID-19 being a constant threat to student’s safety, things haven’t been able to go back to the way they once were just yet. Instead, students have adapted to a new normal. One event having to make the adjustment to this new normal is the involvement fair.
Promise hosts an annual involvement fair on campus, where students can learn about clubs and organizations, and clubs can recruit new members. In order to reduce the spread of COVID-19 on campus, having an in-person involvement fair where crowds of students gather and socialize would not be possible this year. Instead of the typical format where clubs have their own tables and students are free to meander from organization to organization, this year the fair is being done virtually via Zoom.
Promise assigned each club its own time slot and Zoom meeting, and it was the student’s responsibility to determine which club meetings they wanted to attend.
Without the typical in-person gathering that is customary with the involvement fair, some students have been worried about how this might affect other students’ interest in the event.
“They want to actually be there and enjoy it,” junior forensic science major Eric Nazario said. “Online activities will show a decline in student involvement I believe, because students don’t want to be on their computer or phone for a fundraiser or movie night type of event.”
Due to these new restrictions clubs have had to spend more time this year reaching out to students and advertising their event in order to get students to attend their Zoom meeting.
“Challenges with the online format [were] getting word out,” sophomore business administration major Anna Serro, and president of the fashion merchandising club, said. “We have been posting on our Instagram about the event, and Promise also posted about the event, but normally students will wander through the fair and see what they are interested in.”
Other clubs have been worried about how they will be able to hold any of their own events this year.
Junior accounting major and president of the bowling club Mike Mele expressed his concerns about how virtual events might impact his club.
“It will definitely affect how many events are done, as some events can’t happen due to the no in-person events rule,” Mele said. “It will be especially difficult for our club because our whole routine is based on being together in person.”
In spite of student’s concerns, the involvement fair was able to have a successful start, with Zoom meetings beginning on Monday, Sept. 14.
“The school adapted the best way they could,” Serro said.“I think this was a good way to see some interested students, and now we have some people to follow up with.”
The Fashion Merchandising Club will be holding virtual events throughout the semester, along with many other organizations across campus.
Greek students have also adapted to the digital nature of Post this year, and they are looking forward to upcoming virtual meetings.
“I’ve been excited for Greek Recruitment for a while now, and can’t wait to see the new members of each organization,” Nazario said.
The involvement fair will continue on Zoom this week, and clubs will continue to host virtual events that students can attend throughout the semester. Students can find out about upcoming events by following Promise’s Instagram account @liupromise.