Pantherpalooza a showcase for Eastern interests

Analicia Haynes, Managing Editor

Students from all walks of life piled into the Grand Ballroom Wednesday afternoon to share common interests and take a chance to sign up for new adventures during this year’s Pantherpalooza.

Music, loud laughter and an array of voices spilled out from behind the ballroom doors in the Martin Luther King Jr. University Union as students made their way to different tables to talk to representatives from the Registered Student Organizations.

“This is my first year, I transferred in here in January of last year and so this is a brand new experience,” said Emilija Kiskis, a junior kinesiology and sports studies major and an executive board member for ACTS Campus Ministry. “But I love to see new faces and see what they’re interested in and get a feel for that.”

Kiskis sat behind a table with a poster compiled of different photos and information regarding ACTS stationed to the left of her.

She said when she first attended Eastern, she got involved with different RSOs because of Pantherpalooza and she said it is a way to connect students who have different areas of interest.

She said reaching out to those students and encourage them to join ACTS was a personal goal.

“Go for it, it doesn’t hurt to try,” she said referring to students who may hesitate to sign up with an RSO, particularly ACTS. “Take that dip in the water, I’m sure you won’t be going back.”

Lizze Bridges, a senior English literature major and vice president for the Asian American Association, said it was also her first time representing her RSO at Pantherpalooza and seeing what the campus has to celebrate, in terms of RSOs, was very “cool.”

“There’s so much to see here that you wouldn’t see otherwise,” Bridges said. “Like the yarn society that’s sitting across the way there, I didn’t know we had a Yarn Society.”

Sitting next to the president of the association, Jessica French, and articles Bridges said the fair was a great way to get organizations that may not have publicity, out there, including her own club.

“I’ve talked to a couple of people who said they didn’t know this club existed,” Bridges said. “It’s great to be able to talk to students…it’s great to connect with students that way.”

Jordan Campbell, a sophomore sociology major and the president of Project Link an RSO that was created near the end of last semester, said his RSO had a big turnout and is looking forward to the next body meeting.

Tiffany Jones, a junior health administration major and the vice president of Project Link, said Pantherpalooza was fun for her and Campbell not only because they were able to recruit students but they were also able to sign up for other organizations.

“It’s cool to see what other people are doing here on campus and possibly collaborating with them on future projects,” she said.

Campbell said Pantherpalooza was important because it is a great place to spread awareness for students who want to make friends and be known.

“(The RSOs) might be a lifelong organization that you will be apart of,” he said. “It’ a great way to meet people and get yourself known so you actually enjoy your college experience.”

Jones agreed but added that the RSOs might be able to help students find their future major and serve as a chance to meet lifelong friends.

French, who is also a senior music composition major, said when it comes to signing up for RSOs, there is nothing to be afraid of.

She said though being in a new environment may be scary, the organizations want to welcome students with open arms and want to have new members.

“Whatever you’re interested in, there’s probably a club for it,” Bridges said.

Analicia Haynes can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected]