The Athletic Centre was bustling with activity on a rainy Sunday afternoon as the Mount Allison Students’ Union (MASU) held their annual Clubs & Societies Fair. The September 8 event saw the gathering of over one hundred of Mt. A’s various clubs and societies in the Athletic Centre, all of whom were looking to welcome new members into their diverse groups.
“I think the Clubs and Societies Fair is important for two reasons,” said MASU Vice-President, Campus Life Heather Webster, who was tasked with organizing the event, “First, a big part of the Mt. A experience is the extracurricular activities. A lot of students want to be involved and this is a way to see what the university has to offer: they can sign-up and pick and choose. Second, it gives the clubs and societies a push to get started and organized for the year, and to be aware of the services we offer them.”
Members of the various clubs and societies themselves were also pleased with the fair’s layout: “I really liked the setup; the two circles worked really well and it left space in the middle for people, like swing society, to dance or just hang out,” said Swing Society executive member Sarah Peverill, “I thought there was a good turnout of both first year students and upperclassmen; we had a lot of people sign up!”
A call for clubs and societies to register was issued via MASU’s Facebook and Twitter pages prior to the start of the school semester. 115 groups registered, falling just short of the 120 maximum. The high participation numbers on behalf of the club organizers meant that approximately 250 participants had a hand in running the fair. It also meant that there was a wide variety of options available to students, including academic societies, athletic groups, theatre groups, outreach groups and a multitude of other clubs.
“The Clubs and Societies Fair was certainly beneficial for our group, as it allows for us to make ourselves known to interested students more so than at any other point in the year,” said Underbridge Press President Elijah Teitelbaum, “as a society whose publicly produced work only comes out a few times each year—that is, whenever we publish a work—the fair is excellent for having a campus-wide event at which we are able to make ourselves known.”
“I saw a lot of people hanging out at the fair, and there was a real sense of community,” said Webster, “Most clubs seemed to agree that their numbers were up from previous years.”