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Saint Mary’s hosts yearly Involvement and Resource Fair

| Thursday, September 5, 2019

Saint Mary’s hosted its annual Involvement and Resource Fair on Wednesday, which showcased over 120 organizations students can participate this academic year. Representatives from school and social clubs, on- and off campus-departments and organizations and local volunteer groups from the South Bend community could be found interacting with students.

Students passed the time learning about resources and opportunities available to them. One such volunteer group was called Lot2545.

Gina Twardosz | The Observer

Saint Mary’s Involvement and Resource Fair took place Wednesday in the College’s Angela Athletic Center. Belles could use the event to survey a variety of extracurricular options, including academic clubs, club sports and volunteer groups.

“We work in Uganda with guys that are either currently or formerly called the streets home,” Amanda Jones, the organization’s founder, said. “Whether that’s going back to school, doing vocational training, starting a small business or even reuniting with family.”

Other volunteer groups such as conflict resolution program TAKE10 were found utilizing the event to get students interested in their program.

“We have volunteers from Holy Cross, Notre Dame and Saint Mary’s [which] go out into the community and teach our conflict resolution curriculum to kids,” Notre Dame junior Madison Kuehl said.

TAKE10 operates outside of the Robinson Center on Eddy Street. They have been using the tri-campus activity fairs to recruit for some time, Kuehl said.

“We come to these and get a lot of volunteers,” she said.

The fair is not limited to volunteer groups, but includes sport clubs, such as women’s water polo, as well.

“A lot of people don’t know what water polo is, but I’m teaching them today,” said sophomore and women’s water polo captain Lindsey Shank said. “This is our first year at Saint Mary’s [career fair] because I’m the captain and I just came to Saint Mary’s, so I decided to have a table here. We usually just do the activity fair at ND, but we’re expanding.” 

Other academic clubs such as Physics Club, Math Club and French Club also sent representatives to the event.

“Physics is a small major, and we want to make sure anyone who’s interested in it knows we’re here,” senior Gabi Beach said. “In general, I feel like we’re more of a social club for physics and other STEM majors, to just meet everyone else in it and feel comfortable to ask for help.”

She said Physics Club is a good option for students interested in exploring engineering.

“Any sort of people who are thinking about engineering, it’s probably a good club to join to just open your options up,” she said.

Junior Mary Blake said Math Club is dedicated to helping students identify opportunities related to mathematics.

“Math Club is a student-run club that promotes math through the SMC community and helps students know what opportunities are out there for people interested in math,” Blake said. “[The Involvement and Resource Fair] helps students know that we have a math club, and know more about what we’re about and what opportunities we have for them.”

The fair also saw some previously moribund clubs, such as French Club, make their return to the activities scene.

“French Club is something that was started at Saint Mary’s several years ago, but we haven’t been pursuing French Club for a couple years because it was hard to keep our numbers up,” senior Hailey Cramer-Stevens said. “So we’re just starting the club back up this year and we right now are just organizing things, seeing what people really want on campus.”

Some students who attended the event, such as freshman Skye Sharp, said they were seeking to expand their horizons.

“I just wanted to enroll in a bunch of different stuff I wasn’t involved in in high school, and I want to branch out,” she said.

Sophomore Reina Galvan said she felt similarly and regretted not doing more last year.

“I wish I would have done more last year to get involved this year,” she said. “So I guess I can start now.”

Veronica Terrell, another sophomore, also said she was trying to expand her involvement from last school year.

“I wasn’t as involved as I wanted to be last year, so I just wanted to see what options I could look into this year,” she said.

Freshman Abigail Hauser said she left the event having signed up to participate in a variety of organizations represented at the fair.

“I was told I should come and sign up for some things from my upperclassmen friends and here I am,” she said. “I joined the Eco Club, [Society of Women Engineers] and I’m thinking about auditioning for the dance team.”

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