Clubs and organizations respond to COVID-19 pandemic
Although our current social and political climate is filled with uncertainty, you can still count on Salisbury University clubs and organizations. On-campus clubs and organizations are still counting on student body involvement and have rewired the traditional format of their meetings and events to ensure the safety of all persons within.
Student Emily Donaldson divulged into her concerns with on-campus club participation, an explanatory factor for the majority of the student body: “My biggest concern is ensuring that everyone involved within these organizations is employing practices that will limit the spread of coronavirus.”
“With everything going on, I want to make sure that I am not putting myself in danger through my participation,” Donaldson explained.
Donaldson’s concerns highlight the general state of hesitation to participate within campus clubs and have caused a general depletion in members throughout. On-campus organizations are here solely for the students' benefit, and our health is their main priority.
Campus clubs have employed a range of precautions within to promote student involvement and ensure that all participants are comfortable joining their organizations.
Club involvement can range from entirely virtual, or through socially distanced campus meetings and events.
Fraternity and sorority groups are still on the hunt for new members for their upcoming recruitment season, while simultaneously ensuring the safety of their participants. Many are holding meetings on Zoom and on campus and have altered the traditional formal recruitment to be accessible virtually.
“Holding meetings on Zoom is still a great way to promote the bonding of our sisters and still form connections while actively social distancing,” Carleigh Stokes commented on the alterations within Alpha Sigma Tau. “We are in the process of planning events in which we can still social distance, such as an on-campus scavenger hunt and an outdoor movie night.”
Although the recruitment process will be altered in fraternities and sororities respectively, students still have the ability to participate within these organizations and create lifelong bonds with their brothers and sisters.
Sorority sister Taylor Windmiller explained it best, “We want people to know that we are still here and though things have changed, every one of us is in this together.”
Participation within the numerous organizations offered through campus is more important than ever, all made possible through the precautions employed to prevent the spread of coronavirus. Each respective club has created ways to still be active within the organization, with many employing a mixture of Zoom meetings and socially distanced events.
Mental Health Advocates group member Marl Cimiluca divulged into the importance of the social interactions provided through on-campus clubs, as increased isolation has prompted the rise of mental health issues within our society: “We are following the path of our mission to promote health and self-wellness and aim to provide the students with a safe atmosphere where they feel comfortable.”
Cimiluca then divulged into his fear of a lack of student participation due to our current educational environment, a concern explicit through the majority of organizational clubs on campus.
As the number of COVID cases rises and social distancing becomes a social normality, participation within the organizations offered through the university is more essential now than ever. The organizations provide an outlet for students to be socially active with their constituents, while ensuring that these interactions are safe for each party involved.
The uncharted territory that we have found ourselves in has created a confluence of confusion on the status of many clubs, but the Center for Student Involvement and
Leadership is employing ways for students to still be active on campus. Its mission is to provide opportunities to improve the quality of campus life and the surrounding community and is actively creating safe ways for club participation.
For further concerns on the status of clubs and organizations, contact Center for Student Involvement and Leadership in GSU 125 or at 410-543-6125. For information on ways to be active on campus, visit https://salisbury.campuslabs.com/engage/
By STEPHANIE RIVERA
Gull Life editor
Featured Image: Stephanie Rivera