Let the clubs out

Clubs should be allowed to meet in-person so that they can reap the full benefits of in-person engagement.

Clubs are at their best when individuals have the chance to meet and interact in person. | Graphic by Cate Roser ’21/Staff

COVID-19 has changed our lives, day in and day out, for almost a year. Classes are half online and half in-person, homework is turned in half online and half in-person, and clubs are…well, what are we doing about clubs? As of right now, clubs have stopped changing the world and bettering individuals. As students, we cannot control the unrelenting passing of time, but we can control what we do with our time. Academic clubs should be allowed to meet in-person following COVID-19 precautions, because people need to understand their interests and create new connections.  

After almost a year of COVID-19 restrictions, students are still not allowed to meet in-person for clubs. High school is a complicated time in our lives— we are young adults who are gonna be put out into the real world to follow our dreams. One of the main reasons to join a club is to see if it sparks any interest in an individual. Without being able to meet in-person, certain academic clubs are at a halt, waiting for the green light. With clubs not meeting in-person, students do not get to dive deeper into the activities and experience the goals of a club, which ultimately allows students to decide if they want to dedicate four years to that organization.

Clubs being hosted on Zoom makes it harder for people to have side conversations and to connect with each other. The same awkwardness felt in classes with dozens of students, is amplified in club meetings with just ten people. If clubs were allowed to be in-person, students could understand others on a greater level and feel more comfortable. Connections are important for our mental health, as friends are there to celebrate our good times, provide comfort during the bad times, and most importantly they help us stay grounded. Along with that, these are life skills. School is often associated with academics but being able to talk to others is something school subconsciously teaches us. A student may be the smartest one in the class, but if they cannot talk to people and share their ideas, they will never be heard. The world is a small place and by creating one connection it could lead to a lifetime of new experiences and expand our future. By attending in-person meetings, relationships can be made in a simpler and more authentic way. 

COVID-19 has taken the freshman year experience, sophomores’ time to explore, juniors’ time to shine, and the many benefits of being a senior. We do not need to add onto this list by stopping academic clubs from meeting. If people are uncomfortable with meeting in-person, by all means make it a choice to attend online or in-person. With that option it is in our own hands if we want to go in-person or not, like how school is being handled. Clubs are just as important as our classes so they should be treated like them. It is a time for us to discover our goals, achieve them, and meet people on the way there, but this is achieved greater in-person.