By Lucas Vacco
After the first week of in-person classes, the College took another step towards normalcy by hosting its annual fall Student Involvement Fair on Sept. 2 at Lions Field. The College recognizes more than 230 clubs and organizations which include academic and career organizations, club sports, Greek life, advocacy organizations and more.
The Office of Student Involvement organizes the Student Involvement Fair every year so students at the College can meet and interact with organizations or clubs of interest to them. Although the fair can be overwhelming for some students, many are thrilled that they are on campus engaging in college life instead of on a screen like last year’s fair, which was virtual.
This was one of the first large on-campus events the College hosted this year. Since this was the first time freshmen and sophomores experienced the fair in person, the turnout was higher than in previous years.
“We were fairly confident that we'd have a decent turnout. Especially with two classes of undergraduates being brand new to the on-campus experience, we were very optimistic — and with good reason — about the number of students we thought would participate,” said Maria Quattrocchi, the Student Involvement and Transitions coordinator.
As the Involvement Fair started, Lions Stadium was filled with crowds of enthusiastic students walking around and exploring the variety of clubs and organizations the College has to offer. Many of these students were patiently waiting in lines to sign up for organizations.
“At any given point throughout the night, we saw the field full of happy, dancing and energetic humans, who you could tell were thrilled to not only be at the event but to also just be on campus with their peers. It was really awesome to see,” Quattrocchi said.
Sophomore computer engineering major Michael De George was optimistic about the Involvement Fair since he did not get the opportunity to experience an in-person fair during remote learning.
“The Involvement Fair was a great chance to meet people who share the same interests,” De George said. “I think the fair turned out great. It was well organized and there was a big turnout from all students. It was great to see everyone out and about hanging out at the Lions Stadium.”
Freshman physics major Michael Polania was happy to observe that the college community was finally able to come together.
“Being at the Involvement Fair and seeing the different interests students have truly excited me,” Polania said. “The fair showed me the diverse communities and interests people have at TCNJ. Personally, the fair helped me find organizations such as the Mathematics and Statistics Club.”
Having a variety of clubs and organizations allows students to branch out and join new communities.
Junior accounting major Colleen Rauch is the president of TCNJ Treblemakers, which is a female acapella group. Rauch was extremely excited to present her group at the fair and recruit new members.
“It’s definitely a very exciting event when you are the one to promote the club you run,” Rauch said. “It was something very new to me, but nonetheless, I was very excited to potentially recruit new girls.”
The Involvement Fair was an event to remember for many students, especially the freshmen and sophomores who experienced it for the first time in person. Through the Involvement Fair, the College was able to, once again, come together as a community.