Baruch College’s Club Fair allows all active clubs to market themselves to anxious freshmen starting their undergraduate careers, transfer students seeking to build a new foundation and upperclassmen desperate to soak in as much as possible before graduating. Due to a blizzard on Feb. 9, the event, hosted once a semester by the Office of Student Life, was canceled. Failure to reschedule the Club Fair cost all registered clubs the opportunity to attract new members.
Due to the storm, The Vagina Monologues, hosted by the Health & Wellness Center, was also canceled. However, the event was swiftly rescheduled and performed the following week. It received additional support from The Gender, Love and Sexuality Spectrum and was able to proceed without major complications. Though the Club Fair is larger in scale and requires a great amount of coordination among club leaders and Student Life, an event directly organized and hosted by OSL should be prioritized.
The lack of apparent effort to reschedule the Club Fair forces students to question how OSL will respond to future school closures and canceled events. A snowstorm on March 14 forced the postponement of a sit-down conversation with licensed physician assistant Linda Baptiste about avoiding illnesses and promoting healthy habits. In addition, the second-floor lobby was due to host a four-hour fundraiser for Relay for Life, one of the school’s largest fundraising campaigns. Whether OSL can reschedule these events or whether it even has contingency plans in place for the unavoidable remains unknown.
The Club Fair can be the first step a student takes in developing meaningful professional and personal relationships. Participation grants students the opportunity to discover niche interests they never knew they had or find like-minded individuals they otherwise would not know. Club leaders can serve as mentors and provide a welcoming space for networking and socialization. The strong sense of kinship fostered by club participation makes students well-rounded members of the community and more likely to enjoy their experience at Baruch.
Without club life, Baruch would be reduced to the “commuter school” cliche that is so often attached to it. Many students are already reluctant to venture into club life because they are buried under piles of schoolwork. With over 160 active clubs, parsing through all the options can be a daunting task. The Club Fair relieves students of that burden and encourages them to dive headfirst. Failing to reschedule the event makes it even more challenging for students to thrive in a competition-driven school.