CAMPUS LIFE EDITOR
For many, the start of Spring semester signifies resuming responsibilities and returning to routine. Students rarely break out of “comfort-zones” well-established before February. These can consist of things like friend groups, study habits, clubs, organizations, etc. It often feels like anything you’ve missed out on first semester will just have to wait until next Fall. “Senioritis” kicks in regardless of what year you’re in, and all you want is to get through the next four months as quickly and smoothly as possible. It becomes easy to feel like you have already decided exactly what this semester would be like months ago, but if you’re looking for new opportunities or a fresh start, it is much easier to find one than you might believe.
The idea of joining a club or organization, without the aid of the Student Activities Fair or an influx of emails telling you about each club, can seem a little bit daunting. Second-year Jujus Molina says that she has never joined a club during the Spring semester because she believes, “it’s nerve-wracking because you’ve missed out on the important stuff, like the foundations of the club.” While it takes a little more courage to do your own research on meeting times and reach out to the club yourself, it is much easier than it seems. Clubs and organizations want you to join, regardless of which semester it is; it’s usually just easier for them to recruit in the Fall while student interest is fresh.
From sports (lacrosse) to societies (Metaphonian) and many other things, fourth-year Emily Olague, is heavily involved on campus. Recently she joined K-POET, the Whittier College radio station. She says that she “had a lot going on first semester to commit [to]. So, I felt like second semester gave me a new beginning, sort of, to feel like I can be more involved with the [organization].” Olague hasn’t been there long, but “absolutely fell in love with the atmosphere.”
According to Olague, the hardest part about getting involved second semester was not finding the organization, because of “word of mouth and marketing,” but because “I only have so much time left; I wish I joined much sooner.” She still doesn’t regret joining, even if her time is limited because “What counteracted this was the people. I felt so welcomed from everyone in the group and immediately felt at home.” Olague reminds us that it’s never too late to get involved, and that if you decide not to join because you believe that you missed your chance first semester, you might miss out on a beautiful thing.
The Office of Student Engagement (OSE) can help you to establish a new club, or to find an existing one. Third-year Haily McCord, who works at OSE said, “You can come to the OSE and ask any questions… we can give you resources, like Orgsync, that [have] all the information about every active club on campus.” They will be more than willing to help you find any information you need.
New clubs, such as the eSports club, can be created this semester. “[I have] a passion for competitive video games,” said eSports club president and third-year James Behenna. “I believe that under the right leadership, eSport [club can] become a part of the College [culture]” While new second-semester clubs have to put in more work to get the word out, they can still reach people and are just as valid as the clubs advertised in the Fall. Behenna said the members are “using social media as well as word-of-mouth communication” to spread the word about their new club.
If you had a cool club/organization in mind First semester, but regretfully ended up not joining, you really don’t have to wait until next year. Second semester is a great time to branch out, make new friends, and find a place that you feel welcomed. I guarantee any club/organization will be more than willing to embrace you as one of their own united by a shared interest. If you’re having trouble finding out the meeting times of a club you want to join or more information, the OSE and OEI are great resources.
The Quaker Campus is always looking for new members. Get involved by attending our assignment meetings Thursday at 4:30 p.m. in Diehl 004A.