An estimated 4,000 students gathered in lot H1 at Grand Valley State University on Friday, Sept. 9 to introduce themselves and stroll around Campus Night Life for the first time in two years.
The air buzzed with excitement as performances drew attention to different clubs throughout the event’s duration.
“Although Campus Night Life occurred last year, there was still worry behind a public event during COVID times,” said Nicole Denz, a sophomore at GVSU. “This year I felt like the event felt much more focused on the event itself and getting to appreciate all the different aspects of campus.”
After a tumultuous past two years, activities have been resuming all over campus in time for the fall semester. Campus Night Life was particularly sought after this year due to the high amount of interaction it usually draws in.
The first event was cancelled last week due to extreme weather conditions. However, the sun came out a week later just in time for the rescheduled event to thrive.
The Office of Student Life invited students back to campus on Sept. 9 to explore their options for extracurricular activities. Almost every club at Grand Valley State University set up their table to welcome new interested students to their niche. Students were free to roam and look at any clubs that drew their attention.
The event was attended by groups that cater to everyone’s interests. From academic clubs, advocacy groups, performing arts, and fraternities and sororities, there was something there for everyone.
“It’s really exciting to be here, especially because people seem excited to be able to rebuild that in-person community that was difficult to maintain lately,” said Leah Erben, a member of the Office of Student Life.
Due to the ongoing pandemic, students were limited in their options to join and discover new clubs over the past few years, but Erben is hopeful that this event will help people find their communities at GVSU. Being a part of a club that caters to one’s interests is an amazing opportunity to be able to build the community that might have been lacking over the past few years.
There were over 300 organizations, departments and nonprofits invited to participate in the event this year. The Office of Student Life also provided students with free GVSU merchandise and even offered an interactive VIP Pass game to entice students to engage with organizations that they might not have otherwise approached.
Most clubs advertised their meeting times as well, letting students know if they would be able to fit it into their schedule.
“We are always excited for the opportunity to set up at Campus Night Life,” said Emily Carrol, a member of the Laker Dance Team. “It helps get our name out there and meet new faces and continue to spread the word about our team.”
Students who missed Campus Night Life are still able to join any club that piques their interest. LakerLink is one tool that provides information about all of the active clubs on campus and students can directly connect to the organizations online.
The Office of Student Life is an additional resource located on campus at 1110 Kirkhof Center. There, students can learn more about programs and garner resources in-person that fit their desired interests.