The Center for Leadership and Student Involvement (CLSI) held its Student Involvement Fair for the Spring 2020 semester in Huntington Gymnasium on Wednesday, January 29. The biannual event, which occurs at the start of each semester, exposed Colgate students to 78 of the 149 CLSI-recognized clubs and organizations available to join on campus. Sophomore and Student Organization Liaison Akshara Ramaseshan and CLSI Office Manager Denise Upton worked together to plan the fair.
Founder and President of the Cheese and Culture Club sophomore Cecilia Belzer said she was very happy with how well the Colgate community received her new club, which has allowed her to bring one of her passions to the Colgate community in a unique way.
“I felt like Colgate didn’t have enough good cheese on campus and I wanted to figure out the best way to bring that to campus, and to learn about other countries not in a classroom setting… and everyone loves cheese,” Belzer said.
Belzer said the turnout for her club has been impressive so far; however, she identified a clear distinction between fall and spring signups.
“We started last spring—in March of 2019—and in the fall we had over 100 people sign up for the club,” Belzer said. “The fall is definitely way busier than the spring, we’ve only gotten five signups so far today.”
Despite the club having a lower spring turnout, Belzer said she is looking forward to being a leader of the Cheese and Culture Club going forward.
“So far, it’s been really, really good. We’ve had up to sixty people at one meeting,” Belzer said.
Some of Colgate’s dance groups were also in attendance. President of the Bollywood Dance Group sophomore Saumya Garg said she was excited to meet potential new members and teach them more about Bollywood dance.
“I’m from India, so I’ve grown up dancing Bollywood, so being a part of that culture on campus is really motivating; having people from all different parts of campus dancing has been amazing, it’s really fun to watch everyone learn,” Garg said.
Unlike other clubs that were in attendance at the club fair, many dance groups like Garg’s have an audition process following the initial signup.
“Large group is open to everyone, but small group has an audition process where you do a thirty-second choreography,” Garg said.
Garg said the dance group received more signups during the fall semester Involvement Fair; however, the club still collected around 25 signups for their large group dance. Garg said that she looks forward to continuing to participate in Bollywood dance throughout this semester.
Sophomore Daniel Baker said he has attended and enjoyed many CLSI Involvement Fairs during his time at Colgate, last week’s event included.
“I love the experience of seeing all of the organizations and the different experiences that you can have on campus,” Baker said. “It’s a great way to expose you to the resources that you have.”
First-years Amber Hufford and Stephanie Skura had similar experiences at the fair.
“The club fair makes me super excited for second semester; there’s a lot of great things I’m looking forward to,” Hufford said.
Skura echoed Hufford’s excitement when asked about the clubs she has recently joined on campus.
“I signed up for [Shock Dance Group], Challah for Hunger, tutoring, Dumpling Club—a lot of different things,” Skura said.