Opportunities abound at Campus Life Night
Grand Valley State University and the Office of Student Life will host the 30th Campus Life Night on Sept. 3. The annual tradition will feature similar clubs as it has in the past, but this year the location might change.
GVSU’s club sports coordinator, Eric Garvelink, who is in charge of planning the event for the first time, said the event will still be on the Allendale Campus, but it might be moved to the parking lot outside of the Fieldhouse Arena.
“We’re looking for a new way of updating Campus Life Night and, weather depending, looking to move outdoors to create a block party type atmosphere,” Garvelink said.
With more than 300 tables reserved and about 4,000 people expected to attend, Garvelink said one of the biggest reasons for the change is that the arena is crowded and safety is a concern because the arena can get hot. At the new location outside, the event will include a DJ and provide more space for setting up the tables and moving around.
Campus Life Night is not just for freshmen but for all students who want to get involved, and Garvelink said he hopes this setup will bring more students in, including people who live off-campus.
One of the main goals for the event is to provide students with information about the many student organizations on campus and help them find clubs that might interest them. Attending the event is also viewed as an opportunity to meet people, enhance a resume and create memories, Garvelink said.
“Finding something at GVSU that you’re passionate about helps to maximize your college experience,” he said. “It’s never too late to get involved in something. Twenty years from now, students will look back and remember the things they did outside the classroom, and in return, it makes students Lakers for a lifetime.”
Planning for Campus Life Night involves many groups of people, including GVSU Facilities staff and other departments, the Student Organization Center, local businesses and non-profits, and student organizations. Many students who are members of these organizations volunteer and help run fundraisers during the event.
Jessica Naftaly, a junior at GVSU, has been a member of the Crohn’s and Colitis Student Initiative (CCSI) for two years and will be president of the club this year. Naftaly said the CCSI executive board started planning for Campus Life Night a few weeks ago because it wanted to be more organized than last year, while also aiming to increase advocacy by partnering with similar groups on campus. She said CCSI will have an information table, free giveaways and a sign-up sheet for students interested in joining the organization.
“We are trying to spread more awareness about IBD (Irritable Bowel Disorder) on campus, as 1.4 million Americans have IBD,” Naftaly said. “We show students who have IBD what resources are available to them on campus. I want their voices to be heard.”
Another student organization that will be featured at Campus Life Night is the Future Alumni Association. Sara Sabo, GVSU alumni relations assistant, is the faculty adviser for FAA, which is a professional student organization that often works with the Alumni Association to promote Laker for a Lifetime and also volunteers at events.
Sabo said the biggest thing her group hopes to accomplish at Campus Life Night is simply to raise awareness about FAA and Laker for a Lifetime. She also hopes to recruit new members by providing information about how to get involved in FAA and upcoming events that it will host this semester, which include regular meetings, an ice cream social and a dinner to network with professionals.
In addition to Campus Life Night, the Office of Student Life will host many other events this semester, including Laker Weekends, Family Weekend and Battle of the Valleys.
For more information about Campus Life Night, visit www.gvsu.edu/studentlife. For students interested in GVSU student organizations, visit www.orgsync.com.