Student Orgs for Days
As you may have guessed, I try to stay active on campus by investing in a few of my favorite student orgs. One of those is, uhh, Inside Dores — I bet you knew that, though. Some other orgs I really love are VPB’s The VenUe (of which I am now a co-chair!), Alternative Spring Break, and Vandy Spoken Word. I’d love to share a little about them!
VenUe is one of six committees on the Vanderbilt Programming Board, which is a huge org that plans many of the events on campus. At VenUe we’re responsible for planning the late-night, alcohol-free events that offer students incredible entertainment, one of the most popular events being Casino Night, which has historically drawn wayyy more than a thousand students! We also partner with smaller orgs in planning and executing their events. A while back we put on a fundraiser event with Project RISHI — check it out below!
Another enormous org that I just joined is called Alternative Spring Break (ASB). In case you’re not familiar, ASB is big deal — like a nationally recognized big deal. Basically, this org brings together hundreds of driven volunteers on campus, puts them in small groups, and provides them a chance to serve and bond during spring break. The enthusiasm of ASB is unreal: our site leaders sent us on an hour-long scavenger hunt to find them on our site reveal day, and we were met with screaming, hugging, and nigh obscene amounts of candy! If I’m being honest, I felt like a drag at times, but by the end I was nearly as bubbly as everyone else. Oh yeah, do you want to know what my service project is? I’m going to Portland, Oregon to make a community garden! Now that’s something I can get excited about! :)
Mind you, I don’t specifically join the biggest orgs; I’m also part of some smaller ones. Vandy Spoken Word (VSW) is my personal favorite! I mentioned VSW in my post that talked about The Heist, but I don’t think I explained what this org is. Basically, our performers do all kinds of spoken performances: rap, slam poetry, comedy — just about anything you can think of. So far this semester, we’ve had three open mic nights. Anyone is welcome to perform, but the majority of the performances come from VSW members, a fraction of those from yours truly. The most recent open mic night followed the 2016 presidential election and was called “Bars and Ballots!”
I find that working closely with a handful of orgs is much more satisfying (and manageable) than diffusing myself across many, and I definitely recommend doing that for at least the first two semesters of college. That said, I couldn’t tell you how many interest meetings I’ve attended — two dozen or more? I’ve had plenty of opportunity to feel out my interests, and now I can grow my skills in orgs that I genuinely love! If you have any questions, either about the orgs I’m in or about how awesome Vanderbilt is, just send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and I’ll get back with you as soon as possible!