Throughout Welcome Week, the Concordia Student Union (CSU) worked to engage new and returning students. The Union’s Facebook page listed nine events ranging from a sustainability mixer to a student-parent BBQ.
Last Wednesday’s club fair was one of CSU’s more popular events. Hundreds of people marked themselves as “interested” or “going” on the union’s Facebook page. The CSU and four faculty associations work with more than 100 on-campus groups. More than a dozen of them, like the Concordia Game Club to Canadian Students for Sensible Drug Policy, reached out to new and returning students at the fair to make introductions.
Concordia’s CJLO blasted music throughout the Hall Building’s mezzanine as students wandered between displays. First-year student Sienna Thompains said she enjoyed Welcome Week and the club fair.
“I didn’t really know anybody because I’m from the States, but I’m having a great time getting to know people,” said Thompains.
Chris Iannotti, an executive at the Concordia Game Club, said that many first-years and a few graduate students expressed interest in the group. According to Iannotti, finding information about student groups is difficult online but the Club Fair’s physical presence helps overcome technological barriers.
“Right now, the state of Concordia’s website for club finding is a bit messy, but here you’re able to sign up and join all the facebook groups,” said Iannotti.
Iannotti’s Concordia Game Club is not new to Concordia. Founded more than three decades ago, Iannotti said he has no complaints about CSU’s involvement in the on-campus groups.
“We all get a fair budget, and when we need something they [CSU] help us,” said Iannotti.
At another stand, Tess Walker managed the Concordia chapter of Canadian Students for Sensible Drug Policy. Walker, the co-founder of the Concordia chapter that opened this year, said the goal is to promote harm-reduction on campus, but she was disappointed the group did not have a presence during frosh week.
“It’s the year when people start experimenting with drugs and alcohol, and we are hoping to have more resources to hand out,” said Walker. “CSU has been helpful. Especially last year, people helped set up the club. We’ll see how it goes this year.”
Welcome Week is coming to an end, but Club Fair (part II) is scheduled from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. in Hall Building’s mezzanine on Wednesday, September 11.
Photos by Britanny Clarke