Coastal students use fair to get involved with campus clubs

From the The Brunswick News

Liz Courson and her Biology Club display at College of Coastal Georgia attracted a crowd of students Wednesday that eventually blocked the walkway in the Campus Center.

As the students made what looked like green, sticky slime balls at the table, the laughter and excitement grew - and so did the Biology Club membership. A little after noon, the club roster had more than 40 signatures.

"A vast majority of our members for the school year come from this event," club president Courson said of the Student Involvement Fair being conducted Wednesday. "This is a good way to get our name out there and get people excited about the Biology Club."

The Biology Club was one of about 30 organizations trying to lure new members for the academic year through the fair.

The Biology Club was using its slime table to try to attract members to replace ones who graduated this past spring. Start-up organizations, like the Student Accounting Society, were hoping to build up membership to help their chances of being recognized as an official campus club.

Joe Bailey, accounting society president, wasn't sure what to expect at the fair, but he had hopes of adding to the club's 14 members.

"We're trying to see if we can get a few people interested," Bailey said. "Hopefully, we can get an idea of what's out there for us."

There would be no better place than the Student Involvement Fair, which attracted students from all class levels, wandering the center, looking at what each group was offering. If they weren't talking to members of one of the organizations at their tables, students were enjoying some of the novelty items at the fair, such as riding a mechanical surfboard or making their own dog tags.

"That's just so students have something they can take away from this day," said Jamie Parker-Lewis, director of the Campus Center and Student Life. "Hopefully, after they do that, they at least consider joining an organization."

The fair is designed to help organizations recruit members and for students to explore opportunities, Parker-Lewis said.

Kerdansky Besson was one of those students looking for opportunities. The sophomore marketing major is already in Rotaract, a Rotary-sponsored service organization for people from 18 to 30 years old, but he figured he would try to find other organizations that might pique his interest. That way, he could broaden his campus involvement and enhance the experiences on his resume for a potential employer, Besson said.

"(Employers) want to see that you're really active during college," he said. "It looks good on your resume."

Like Besson, many students at the fair were there with their eyes toward their futures.

While some freshmen attended the fair, a lot of upperclassmen were there to get that much-wanted experience added to their resumes, Parker-Lewis said.

"I think there are still a number of sophomores and juniors looking to get involved, and choose more of an academic-based club," she said. "They know they have to build that resume, and it's just as important as the high GPA (grade point average) they're getting."

The second and final Student Involvement Fair will be at the beginning of spring semester, which starts in January.

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Release Date: 8/29/2013
Source: The Brunswick News

By MARTIN RAND III