Over 400 students are signing up for a variety of clubs at the involvement fair. Courtesy of CSUDH
By Jasmine Contreras and Korrea Lewis, Staff Writers
The 90 clubs and organizations at California State University, Dominguez Hills, are encouraging students to get involved, especially as they can now host on-campus meetings and/or events. Clubs and organizations are in alignment with CSUDH’s safety guidelines to continue functioning as they did before COVID-19, now that the campus is partially open.
Many organizations and clubs lost membership because of distance learning. The Black Student Union (BSU) was just one of the many clubs whose membership decreased but the BSU is slowly transitioning to have an on-campus presence. Vice President Terrie Kennon, said they are trying to figure out a way to regain those members and keep old members.
“To get more people to join BSU, we are reaching out to other black student-run organizations in Southern California such as California State University, Long Beach’s BSU, and forming partnerships,” Kennon said. “We would like to engage more with the black student life at CSUDH by hosting events, meetings, and community service as well.”
Despite the decrease in members during the pandemic, things are turning up, and BSU had an increase of over 40 members this fall, many of them being freshmen and sophomores.
Although they are free to host on-campus classes, organizations recognize that not all members are ready to engage in on-campus interactions. Many, like the BSU, continue their meetings via Zoom. “It is also evident that many people are still trying to get back to a normal state where they feel comfortable being around others again,” Kennon said. “Many students still need time to heal before they can commit themselves to something such as a student organization.”
Another club that relies on Zoom to keep its members active is the Kinesiology Student Association (KSA). This student-run club helps connect individuals who are following similar career paths.
President Mia Leccese found that the KSA has had an increased number of members even during COVID-19 due to the meetings being more accessible via Zoom. She said that there are about 45 to 60 members and the numbers continue to grow rapidly.
“Students definitely want to be more involved! I feel that they are eager to get back on campus and show their Toro pride,” Leccese said. “[CSUDH] has always been one big community and family and it feels good to come back home.”
Freshman Valeria Barrera is one of many students who has recently signed up for the KSA because it was in her best interest and she found that it would be a great opportunity.“They have workout days which really interests me because I want to stay active, especially since all my classes are online,” Barrera said.
Clubs and organizations also rely on social media to reach students, share upcoming events, and stay connected. To get more students like Barrera, the KSA is promoting itself through its Instagram page and emails. KSA is also participating in tabling events when given the opportunity and members are promoting the club to other classmates.
The KSA plans to organize safe in-person events in the future for its members, which would consist of hiking and working out.
The BSU, KSU, and many other clubs were allowed to showcase what they offered to students in the involvement fair on Sept. 2, which was organized by the Office of Student Life (OSL). The fair took place at the CSUDH New Housing Complex, off the east walkway.
The OSL mission is to support all CSUDH clubs and organizations on campus and help students create new clubs or organizations.“We wanted to share with students the many ways you can engage and get involved while learning on campus and the skills you can potentially build from joining a club or organization,” Vorobiev said.
“Now that the campus is open, we are offering a variety of on-campus and virtual programs to engage our students and get them more involved on campus,” Vorobiev said. “Our initial effort is to empower our leaders to recruit and share with the larger CSUDH community.”
To get more involved and find out about upcoming events, students can go to the CSUDH Toro Link website, including all the school’s clubs and organizations.