10 tips to handle Quad Day

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10 tips to handle Quad Day

By Da Yeon Eom, Columnist

Quad Day marks the beginning of the school year, creating a welcoming atmosphere for incoming freshmen. Without a doubt, the day presents a significant opportunity if you wish to be actively engaged in organizations throughout your time at the University. To achieve the most out of the day, here are ten tips to be properly prepared:

Stay hydrated

Bringing a water bottle or any other vessel for drinking is a must on a hot quad day. There is a high possibility that the day will be scorching and humid. Keeping hydrated throughout your time on the Main Quad is essential if you wish to last long enough to find every club you are interested in.

Wear comfortable clothes

You will be walking around a lot and maybe even getting stepped on, so comfortable clothes are an absolute necessity. While you may think that getting around the Quad would be easy, you will be spending majority of your time trying to push your way through crowds.

Bring a bag and an umbrella

You will be receiving a lot of free promotional products such as bags of candies, planners and pens. Carrying a bag to organize the items and brochures would be ideal. Also, an umbrella can come in handy to battle against the unpredictable Illinois weather. Being wet in a hot and humid weather surrounded by thousands of others can be miserable.

Don’t sign up for clubs that you don’t see yourself joining

It may be tempting to sign up for clubs that sound intriguing. It is easy to convince yourself that you will be belly-dancing and playing water polo during the school year; however, it might be impossible to keep up once the school starts and you have homework to manage. To prevent your inbox from being spammed with emails from clubs that you only briefly considered joining, it would be best to restrain from signing up for too many unrealistic ones.

Consider professional/service/social purposes

There are many reasons to join RSOs, but you should primarily consider the professional, service and social aspects of each organization. Professional organizations can be helpful if you plan to build a network in your area of study and boost your resume.

Service RSOs are good for making your time in college worth more than just your education by benefiting different communities. Lastly, social organizations such as sororities and fraternities can help you establish connections and have fun. Take time to think carefully about the achievements that you can earn, and which purposes are worth investing your valuable time in.

Either go alone or with friends who have similar interests

Since you need to make careful decisions about what organizations to join, it may be worth it to venture out to Quad Day alone. Try not to be rushed or waste time waiting for your friends when you would rather be checking out the organizations of your interest. You can minimize distractions and optimize your time by going to the quad day information tables by yourself or with friends who have similar interests.

Take time to read through the organization’s goals, missions and achievements

Instead of briefly looking at the title, pictures and maybe a sentence or two about what the organization is, you should take the time to research it. Read and try to stay educated on the clubs’ goals, missions and achievements. There will probably be several similar organizations that you encounter during Quad Day, but you can make an informed choice between them by reading the fine print.

Strategize how you will venture through the quad

Study the map of the quad. You don’t want to spend time going through the same organizations twice, and you don’t want to waste time trying to walk back the same path when there are hundreds of people going the opposite direction.

Before attending Quad Day, you should plan ahead for what you want to see to minimize the time and effort in completing a loop.

Plan how many organizations you want to join beforehand

Realistically, with your busy class schedule, jobs and a social life, there will be a limit on how many clubs you can join.

You should try to approximate how many hours you are willing to invest in the extracurricular activities per week and what is needed to reach the leadership positions within them.

Don’t be afraid to talk to the organizations’ representatives

The most efficient way to learn about RSOs is to meet with the representatives of the organizations.

By asking questions and listening to their experiences in the group, you can figure out what to expect and make connections for future references.

Da Yeon is a junior in ACES.

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