The Kimball Ballroom was abuzz yesterday afternoon with students and community members promoting clubs, organizations and charitable programs throughout Columbia.
We had lots of booths from outside groups—the American Red Cross, Big Brothers, Big Sisters, the Food Bank, churches—all there letting students know about happenings and volunteer opportunities off campus. But there’s a lot going on on campus, too, and the fair gave our students a chance to plug their clubs, including new clubs being formed this year.
The event, of course, was for students, but I couldn’t resist swinging by to see what Stephens ladies are up to this year.
Here are a few that attracted my attention:
Beautiful began four years ago as a club to promote diversity on campus by encouraging women of all races, backgrounds and majors to come together and talk about common issues. Juniors Lauren Fisher and Jada West are overseeing the group this year and have plans to increase the number of events and programs they offer. They’re interested in hosting panel discussions, connecting students with mentors and just improving women’s concept of self and individualism. Beautiful is just that.
The Dead Writer’s Society
A fan of the movie “The Dead Poet’s Society” and a fan of many of the authors depicted on the club’s sign, I couldn’t resist stopping by Shelly Romero and Ashleigh Stevenson’s station. Shelly, a freshman, started the Dead Writer’s Society this year as a way to promote reading, especially in the sci-fi, vampire and general gore genres. Shelly envisions a book club where anyone can show up to talk about specific books. She got the idea from a teacher at her high school in Waynesville who encouraged her and some other literary types to read and discuss books that interested them.
A secret society at some colleges and universities, Mortar Board membership is not secret at Stephens, but it is selective. Students who maintain a high GPA their junior years are invited to apply. If accepted, students become members as seniors and they get to do all sorts of fun and worthwhile things, such as promoting safe trick-or-treating at Halloween, supporting Alzheimer’s research with a Zumba marathon and collecting books and canned food for low-income families, members Anne Malin and Emily Wagner-Davis tell me.
I also stopped by to learn more about Sketchy Business, a student-run performance group that basically puts on student-written and produced plays on campus. There, I met Emma Delfosse, a senior who is also the author of a blog I read called “Makeup Love.” Basically, Emma loves make-up and uses the blog to review products. A theatre major, she also lets readers know what’s going on in the department and shows off some theatrical make-up techniques.
Obviously, Stephens has a lot more clubs and organizations on campus, but those are a few that are, perhaps, lesser known. Bottom line—we have amazing students doing amazing things, not only in the classrooms but also in their spare time.