Virtual Week of Welcome continues Tuesday, Sept. 1 as Long Beach State clubs and organizations welcome prospective members via Zoom.
The morning session offered students a chance to meet with academic organizations like Project Ocean and CSULB Film Club as well as Associated Students, Inc. auxiliaries such as 22 West Media and Beach Pride Events. The afternoon session featured cultural and religious organizations at school.
The South Asian, Middle Eastern, Arab, North African Club shared how their first day of the event was going.
“We started the Zoom call at one and there were already two people waiting,” Shaika Guatam, a fourth-year nursing major, said.
The club’s purpose is to build a community for members of those backgrounds and celebrate their cultures. Both Guatam and fourth-year psychology major Sabah Ahmad explained that most of their club members were seniors so they were hoping to add new students this semester.
Ahmad said that all they could hope for is for one student to be interested in the club after Week of Welcome.
“It’s just to help build the community so that kids on campus can feel safe,” Ahmad said.
They both agreed that the Zoom experience has been awkward as they tried to deliver their messages in different ways for all the new students that joined.
“It’s a lot easier to get people interested in-person,” Ahmad said.
Clubs across Week of Welcome had to navigate mic problems and awkward silences as people tried to unmute themselves. It was not easy, but organizations like Club Destino, a Latin based group of worship, worked to keep students engaged.
Club Destino created a survey for students to fill out in the chat and invited students to share how the pandemic has affected their lives and how their semester was going so far.
While students were more vocal within Club Destino, clubs like the Nikkei Student Union, a Japanese social and cultural based club, had at times only a few prospective members join with their video turned off.
Still, NSU leaders like third-year communications major Seia Watanabe kept the conversation going by explaining the differences between them and the Japanese Student Association.
“It doesn’t really matter what you speak or where you’re from in our club,” Watanabe said. “There is a little something for everyone.”
All of Tuesday’s featured organizations will host a second session on Sept. 4 starting at 10 a.m.