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Annual ASW Clubs Fair hosted virtually for the first time amid COVID-19

Board members of RHA pose in front of their stand at Westminster College’s annual Clubs and Organizations Fair on Aug. 31, 2017. This year the annual fair was moved online due to COVID-19. (Photo courtesy Kelsey Laramie)

Amid COVID-19, several beginning-of-semester events have been altered to take place virtually. One of these events was the ASW Clubs Fair, which took place online Thursday. 

“This is our first time hosting virtually,” said ASW Clubs President Dwain Worrell.

Hosting virtual events is a new concept for many and the shift comes with an interesting set of challenges. 

“With the online connection, some people don’t have WiFi, some people are not paying attention to their socials or their emails,” Worrell said. “It’s rough on that part.”

Despite challenges, Worrell said he isn’t too discouraged because students are still expressing interest in getting involved with clubs on campus. 

“I’ve been getting a lot of emails from students about joining clubs,” Worrell said. 

Aside from missed connections or poor wifi, organizers said engaging students digitally can be more taxing than in-person interactions.

“On a call, people get virtually exhausted,” said Lani Pati, coordinator of Student Involvement and Orientation. “Being mindful of virtual exhaustion is important.” 

Considering this challenge of virtual exhaustion, several clubs are doing what they can to meet in person when possible. 

“Maybe every once in a while we can do some outdoorsy activity where we can keep our distance but get to know each other a little bit closer,” said Ryan Ashby, senior aviation management major and member of the Latter Day Saints Students Association.

COVID-19 has changed the way students interact both in the classroom and at events. Pati said she is cognizant that the transition is challenging and shouldn’t be overlooked when considering engagement options.

“There’s a lot of pressure on the college experience,” Pati said. “But then we’re also in a pandemic and we’re also dealing with a lot of other things. I think it’s so important to remind students to be kind with themselves.”

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Rian Zetzer
Rian is a “super-senior” communication major graduating in December. When Rian is not on campus, you can find her skiing, hiking or biking in mountains with her trusty dog Ziggy. Rian hopes to combine her passion for the outdoors with her passion for content creation by working in the outdoor industry upon graduation.

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