New Student Groups Hunt Recruits at Club Day


Kathy Honcharuk

The Puente Club focus on Latinx culture and history.

Debuting student groups squeezed flyers and posters into a crowded tabletop showcase for Club Day last week, hoping to gain visibility and recruit members. Brand new, quarter old, and year old clubs competed with about 30 long-established groups for audience attention. Though they started small, newcomers had some success.

Rowanne So, representing the two-quarter-old Foothill Automotive Enthusiasts Club, had a fraction of a table and a modest sign to promote herself, yet gained 20 signups. For her, it was a victory.

So explained that the club works to connect students to below-market-rate body shops, repair shops, and venues to buy vehicles. “Eventually we want to teach about how to work on our own cars,” she said.

So is a car buff and organizes visits to fancy car shows. But she wants students to know: “you don’t need a ‘cool’ car to join.” She said some members just want to learn about cars from experts and aficionados.

Travis Hardwick, at the table next to So, positioned a flashy surfboard to draw attention to Foothill’s one-year-old Surf Club. “I want to recruit a core group of dedicated surfers this year,” said Hardwick, who was disappointed by a lack of attendance during the club’s trial year.

He kept his eyes peeled for a rumored legendary surfer called Christian. “It’s hard to run a club,” he admitted, “so I’m looking for people who really want to surf.” He explained novices are invited to join, but he wants a core of experts. Hardwick finished with a long list of sign-ups, but not necessarily with the A-team he wanted. Foothill Surf Club intends to keep looking.

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  • A member of the Environmental Action Club tries to encourage a student to join the club.

  • Pavini Sethi explains the purpose of Wisdom Club to a student.

  • Spencer Cooley waits for new member recruits.

  • Students find useful knick knacks at the at Chinese Campus Fellows Club table.

  • Students had an opportunity to register to vote at Club Day.

  • A group of students wait in line to get their tasty hot dogs.

  • Chinese Club members are looking for new students.

  • Fund the Future Club members are teaching student about microfinance.

  • A member of the We for She Club advocates for gender equality for women.

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A debuting community service group called Just Do It Club deployed recruiters wearing matching blue and yellow shirts away from the table and into the plaza. They pointed students to a large poster and signup list. Andy Chan, a representative of the club, said his table succeeded in attracting over 40 signups. The volunteer group cleans trash, hosts a food pantry, and maintains green spaces in San Jose.

The student government offered free hot dogs, popcorn, and shaved ice to visitors during Club Day. Students inhaled the hotdogs almost immediately, leading to disappointment when others found the steaming grill had no more snacks to offer. Nelli Mkhitrian, relieved of hotdog duty, explained that Fall Quarter’s club day is the most crowded. “People stick with clubs,” she said, so by winter, fewer clubs are seeking members. She eyed an eerily deserted table of condiments.

The Inter-Club Council of Foothill College oversees more than 60 active athletic, career, cultural, departmental, honors, service, political, religious, social, and special interest clubs. The clubs are all student-run and serve to help students make friends and enrich their academic experiences.

Students interested in forming a new club can find instructions on the ICC website. A new club needs a representative to attend ICC meetings, signatures of five interested students, a faculty adviser, and a draft of a constitution describing the club’s purpose and membership qualifications.

If successful, new clubs can make their first public appearance during the winter quarter’s Club Day. One tip: show up early, before the hot dogs run out.