Friday, January 14, 2022
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Student Union abuzz for Union Fest (video)

Video Credit: Taylor Silvestro and Bill King

Photo credit: Jessica Turner

The Student Union contained twelve different stations that students could get their Union Fest passports stamped on Sunday afternoon to win prizes and score free stuff from participating organizations.

After Convocation, the incoming classes of new freshmen and transfer students went to Union Fest to familiarize themselves with UMKC activities by stopping by information booths to learn more about campus life.

Students were greeted by Rugby captain Casey Dowen and player Kameron Powelson, who presented them with free planners.

“You have an opportunity to win some really cool stuff. It’s all brought to you by the Office of Student Involvement,” said student and Office of Student Involvement (OSI) employee, Jordan Brooks. “So it pays to be involved!”

Students were greeted at the Activity and Program Council booth by Coordinator for Student Activities, LaShaundra Randolph, and OSI Graduate Assistant, Jessica House.

“Students come here, we give them these pens, which have all the different ways there are to get to know us,” Randolph said. “We have a calendar of events for August, and then we have a text program where you text your information and we’ll let you know everything that’s going on, once a week, with UPB [Union Programming Board].”

Union Fest couldn’t have made it easier for new students to get involved in activities that interest them.

“I love it so far,” said Katelynn Carr, a new freshman at Union Fest. “There’s a lot going on, and it’s pretty fun.”

Co-President of the Conservatory Dance Association, Erika Edwards, was at Union Fest to get students excited about adding their voice to the Dance Department and Conservatory.

“We’re working on doing a lot of community outreach programs,” Edwards said. “We always raise money to go on a trip to the American College Dance Festival. Today we’re just kind of here to support involvement. We’re showing some broadcasts of the stuff we do, and then we also have a raffle to get a free gift card to Cupcake A La Mode.”

Biological Student Government Events Coordinator Nicole Flood was also at Union Fest to represent her organization.

“Our organization is here for all the Bio major students, to help them in many ways—social things, what they want to do later in life, and academics,” Flood said.

Another student that wanted to make his group’s presence known was Pride Alliance’s Treasurer Tanner Jaeckel.

“Our purpose is basically to provide a safe environment for LGBT students on campus,” Jaeckel said. “We also provide educational resources, such as bringing in guest speakers to discuss all sorts of LGBT issues within the community.”

Nicholas Ferguson represented a Christian organization called the Luke 18 Project at Union Fest.

“This is a Christian college campus ministry that essentially seeks to build a prayer furnace on college campuses all across America,” said Ferguson. “We provide a place for people to come and experience, enjoy, and encounter Jesus Christ and be transformed by his heartbeat; his love towards them.”

In addition to the organizations mentioned in this article, there are so many other opportunities for students to get involved on campus.

One way to get involved is by visiting Roo Groups online and browsing for a category that interests you. You can also stop by the Office of Student Involvement on the third floor of the Student Union, or contact the UMKC Activity and Program Council, both of whom can be found on Facebook.

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