With tens of thousands of students enrolled here, odds are pretty good that UW has a much bigger student population than your old high school (though if not, colour me impressed). While that means you won’t be lacking in options for potential friends, it also means it might be tricky to figure out exactly which kind of people are into the same things you are. So what’s the best way to narrow your options? The Ctrl+F function of your university social experience?
Why, joining a club, of course! It gives you the chance to engage in something that interests you, meet people with similar interests, and kill some free time! Unless you’re in engineering, where I’m told “free time” is an abstract idea (just kidding… sort of).
The clubs here at UW are all-encompassing and vary in degrees of weirdness. Of course, there are some pretty obvious club choices: video game clubs, music clubs, cooking clubs, religious clubs, and so on. On the other hand, there’s also some more niche clubs like the Campus Crusade for Cheese, UW Flashmob, or the Rubik’s Cube club.
There isn’t nearly enough room in this paper to list all the clubs on campus, but the entirety of the massive list can be found at feds.ca/clubs-section/clubs-listing/. UW Athletics also runs clubs throughout the year like the archery club, ultimate frisbee club, and ballet. Clubs run through UW Athletics can be found at nike.uwaterloo.ca/course/Search.aspx.
Of course, there’s a much better way to familiarize yourself with the clubs than by going through lists. On the second Thursday and Friday of every term, Club Days are held in the SLC Great Hall, and clubs set up booths to talk about their activities and recruit new members. This is the absolute best time to sign up for clubs, as you can get information on a bunch of clubs and talk to existing members to find out what’s going on in their club. Don’t be afraid to shop around, either. When I first started, I signed up for more clubs’ mailing lists than I could possibly hope to be involved in, just to get a sense of what each group was about before I committed to anything.
And of course, I’d be remiss to not mention that Imprint is also an option for places to join. It’s a great way to meet a lot of people and learn a few new skills! Just saying…
But what happens if after all this, there just isn’t a club that appeals to you? Well, you can always start your own. The full details of applying for a new club can be found at feds.ca/start-club/, however, here are the main things you’ll need to send to Feds’ Internal Administration Committee:
A cover letter including what your club’s intent is
A club constitution detailing how your club will run
A list of seven members, with their student IDs included
Happy clubbing, first-years!