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Saint Mary’s hosts annual student involvement fair

| Thursday, August 30, 2018

Glittery posters adorned lines of folding tables as the Angela Athletic and Wellness Complex bustled with the excitement for a new year and new friends at the Saint Mary’s Student Involvement Fair on Wednesday.

“From the student government perspective, it helps us recruit new committee members,” senior and student body president Madeleine Corcoran said. “SGA sponsors the event and it brings everyone together. First years find their niche and their passion — it helps this place feel a little bit more like home.”

Colleen Fischer | The Observer

Students attend the Saint Mary’s Student Involvement Fair on Wednesday Night in the Angela Athletic and Wellness Complex.

Coming to the fair was a simpler choice for first year student Maria Del Real.

“I came here to find something to do that is better than being in my room sleeping or eating,” Del Real said.

The Student Involvement Fair was partially organized by Tena Johnson and her team. Johnson is the coordinator for student organizations with the Office of Student Involvement.

“[The office] hopes for all students to find an organization to join and connect with other students with like interests,” Johnson said in an email.

Planning for the fair began in the spring, when clubs registered for the fair. Throughout the process, Johnson was in “constant communication” with the organizations — which at times involved challenges such as dealing with “last-minute requests,” she said.

The fair was different this year from years past in terms of its size, Johnson said.

“This year we requested more tables because we have more registered student groups,” she said.

First year student Sarah Fegan noticed this year’s large turn out.

“I didn’t think that there would be this many clubs,” she said. “There are a lot of different options for me.”

The Student Involvement Fair aims to both help established clubs gain new members and aid newer clubs in gaining their footing. Junior Sophie McDevitt, co-founder of the newly-established Better Together Club, said she was excited for the opportunities the event offered her organization.

“We are a new club so this is our opportunity to get word out to the Saint Mary’s community,” she said. “[To show] that we are here. It is so important that we get a wide range of people. There is no better place to do this than the activities fair.”

Others said they appreciated the fair’s depiction of the campus’s diversity.

“The fair shows diversity, and it shows how we can come together as a community of women,” first year student Emme Licygiewicz said.

In addition to the Saint Mary’s community, the Student Involvement Fair also highlighted the Notre Dame and South Bend communities.

“I’m excited to get involved in service not only at Saint Mary’s, but in South Bend,” freshman Claire Schroeder said as she walked through the service section of the fair, which included organizations such as Habitat for Humanity and La Casa de Amistad.

The Student Involvement fair helps to build community because it encourages students to become more active on campus, senior Clara Chang said.

“It gets people involved and encourages people to meet new people and start your own little family,” she said. “If that’s not sisterhood then what is?”

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