The Observer is a Student-run, daily print & online newspaper serving Notre Dame & Saint Mary's. Learn more about us.



Clubs attract new members at event

Davis Rhorer, Jr. | Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Hoping to find new members and interested freshmen, more 250 clubs and organizations set up tables at the Notre Dame activities night sponsored by the Student Activities Office (SAO) Tuesday night.

“The clubs were great and out in full force,” said SAO director of activities night, Mary Kate Havlik. “We were very successful.”

Havlik said while SAO provides the outlet for clubs and organizations to recruit new students by hosting the event, the ambition of individual organizations in getting people to come out to the event is what caused more than 4,000 students to attend.

The large number of students is part of the reason many clubs experienced a rise in interest when compared with previous years.

“We had double the number of new recruits,” said Gabby Montero, a member of the Management Club of Notre Dame.

Montero said many freshman and sophomores unsure about their majors find opportunities to experience business related events and activities in the club even though the club is smaller in size.

The Center for Social Concerns (CSC) also saw an increase in the number of students who signed up as interested.

“We are always very busy,” said Rosie McDowell, the director of student outreach for the CSC. “Our students are really good ambassadors.”

She said the “energy and enthusiasm for service” among the freshman class is more of a reason the CSC saw a higher turnout rather than any amount of advertisement for the organization or the night.

Junior Tessa Riester, a member of the service club Circle K, agreed that advertising did not play much of a role in recruiting new members.

She said positive “word of mouth” and freshman being involved in similar high school organizations helped the group recruit heavily at the event.

Service clubs such like Circle K and the Center for Social Concerns typically receive large numbers of interested students, members said, but politically motivated clubs also experienced a great deal of interest.

“We had twice as many new people,” said senior Spencer Howard, co-president of the College Democrats of Notre Dame.

Junior Ed Yap, a member of the College Republicans said his group also experienced a higher turnout and many members want to actively campaign during this election year.