Life at Northwest has changed in the past few months for student organizations, who are not allowed to travel or host large in-person events.
After the Student Organization fair Aug. 26, several students found themselves in clubs which have had to change the way they operate. Some moved to Zoom and other virtual platforms, others to outdoor and socially distanced meetings.
The Lighthouse, a Christian fellowship and worship club, used to meet off-campus during the week, but has since moved to on-campus events due to limited spacing. Despite the change in location, members said they believe this change has helped more than hurt their club.
“Honestly, holding events on campus has actually been a bit of a blessing in disguise,” Lighthouse member Ethan Dixon said. “We feel like we’ve interacted with a lot more students this year because we are doing things on campus a lot more.”
Not only is The Lighthouse having socially distanced meetings, but they are also streaming their worship to students who are quarantined or don’t feel comfortable attending the in person meeting.
Junior Kourtnie Stenwall, a member of the Lighthouse publicity team, said she thinks the organization is doing well at keeping students safe.
“The only thing we as students can do now is respect these guidelines on and off campus,” Stenwall said.
Instead of having socially distanced meetings, other clubs have taken the route of using Zoom almost exclusively to meet with their members.
The Student Activities Council is one of the larger clubs on campus, and they have been participating in weekly zoom meetings at 5 p.m. on Thursday nights to reach out to their new and returning members. On top of online meetings, the events that SAC is planning to host are undergoing heavy changes..
“Almost all of our events are being modified or moved online. We are trying our hardest to cut down on in-person events and events that we can’t social distance at,” Vice President Hannah Lucas said.
SAC, which is known for organizing in-person gatherings, is now having to fit every event into the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines and changing their plans accordingly.
“The big events will be spaced appropriately and we will require everyone to wear masks. They will be a little different because we have had to change some locations and details, but ultimately they will still be fun events to attend,” Lucas said.
Not having the option to zoom or properly social distance, some club sports are having to do their best with the changes being made to the way they practice and host tryouts. Men’s Club basketball had tryouts Sept. 2 and wore masks throughout because they couldn’t social distance the entirety of practice.
All organizations have to abide by University standards, and one of these rules is not being able to travel. The Sigma Society, an organization for sisterhood and volunteer service, says this has cancelled some of their plans for the semester.
“We aren't able to go and do our smaller events at the humane society, or gather and go out to clean the highway,” Co-Recruitment Chair Junior Catherine Evans said. “We normally travel, but we understand that we need to follow these rules to stay safe.”
Despite all the changes organizations are making due to the coronavirus, most are finding a way around it to let new and returning members attend meetings and help plan events.