Raising club awareness at SMC

Club Row has come and gone and students at Santa Monica College once again had the opportunity to make their college experience that much more fulfilling.

Signing up for a club in college can be very endearing for a student looking to do more on a campus than the usual four hours of classes and seemingly eight hours of looking for parking.

"It gives you time in between an early morning class and an early afternoon class to do something actually," said Bonny Pennell, a member of SMC's Creative Writing Club. "It also gets you to meet new people. If I hadn't actually come to creative writing club, I wouldn't have met certain people who have the same interests as me, besides just writing."

Clubs in college can serve as a lot more than just something to do on a student's spare time. For some students, SMC serves as new territory with a different set of rules and a new set of people to meet.

Extroverts may have no problem adjusting but for introverts seeking a reason to attend school other than the usual purpose, clubs provide those students a foundation on which to start their college careers.

"When I moved here first week, I joined some clubs and it really helped me get integrated into this school and classes so it was really fun," said Gabriel Reis, a member of the Ballroom Dancing Club.

During the time spent complaining about too much free time in between classes, some students fail to see the many opportunities out there to pass the time. Given that clubs have not always been promoted in the the proper way, a school as big and diverse as SMC should be enough for students to know that there is more past the surface of campus.

The clubs at SMC and the students should find a way to meet half way. When walking around campus, even during the student activity hour, very few clubs are visible as only the outdoor clubs are seen by students.

With over 20 active clubs at SMC, according to the newsletter from the Associated Students, it's unfortunate that more than half of them are hidden indoors.

While clubs like the Ballroom Dance Club at times take place outdoors behind the Letters and Science Building, other clubs like the Creative Writing Club or the Robotics Club end up as missed opportunities due to their lack of visibility and promotion.

"I feel clubs would be a lot happier and a lot bigger if people had more signs up and some clubs would go out to more people to get [themselves] other members," said Courtney King of the Crafting Club. "I love having a reason to want to come to school and a reason to be excited about it, and I think that everyone should and I think that clubs bring that to many people."

Joining a club at school can be helpful in building a sense of community with other students and it allows for students to help each other express themselves by sharing interests and hobbies that others in their lives might not relate to.

Through my own time writing for The Corsair, I've been able to practice my ultimate career path of journalism while building friendships and becoming acquainted with students and faculty that I otherwise would have never known. While The Corsair may not exactly be a club, it holds the same qualities as any other club on campus.

Building friendships and practicing your interests and hobbies can lead a long way for someone with a set career path. More importantly, it can make the stress of everyday college life a lot easier and make for a much more enjoyable ride.

That is what clubs are there for. Whether it's joining a club or simply trying one out, a student should never hesitate to try something new to freshen up their college experience.