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Got Any Clubs? (15 Clubs To Check Out)

Extracurricular activities are an important part of university life! Making commitments to certain clubs can help improve your time management skills a ton; if you plan to go to [insert club here], then there’s no time to procrastinate during the rest of the day. There are so many great clubs at the university that it would be nearly impossible to list them all. Instead I’ve decided to list a few that I’ve either checked out myself, or heard about a lot. Here’s 15 suggestions of what to get involved with this semester!

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1. Poultry Club

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Probably strangest club I’ve personally been involved with at the University. The Poultry club meets and learns about various aspects of the poultry industry. Most importantly though, its provides the opportunity to earn your certification in artificial insemination! On the final day of the program you get to help vaccinate, crop, and move hundreds of baby chicks! It’s an incredible experience.

Poultry club description from college website: “The University of Guelph Poultry Club is nothing but a clucking good time! The club is responsible for maintaining and caring for Dr. Shaver’s heritage laying hens throughout the year at the Arkell research station. The club also tours facilities representing all aspects of poultry production in Ontario. The club plans on touring turkey, broiler and laying hen facilities in Ontario as well as processors and hatcheries. For more information regarding meetings and tours please email poultry@aggies.caor read the SF Update.”

2. Improvians of Guelph (Improv Club)

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The improvians are a group of university students who meet up once a week to play improv games! The club’s facebook page can be found here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/280012688727310/

Improvians of Guelph description from Gryphlife: “We are a covert organization that is determined to bring smiles to its members, one made up line at a time. People have often thought that we were the driving force behind the original pie to the face slapstick comedy. We are not going to confirm or deny these rumors, but let's just say it was totally worth the pie. None of our returning members are part of the Illuminati, however if you are that's cool, we still want you around. So yeah we make stuff up on the spot for comedic value. Our founder Admiral Vanderswag was said to have perfected the art of comedy from the god of comedy himself Mogar Ripper of Sides. Since this event people have come from all over the globe to experience the sheer comedic power our organization has created. Though this may sound intimidating we assure you it is a complete low pressure situation.”

3. JOUG (Jugglers of the University of Guelph)

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Guelph’s juggling club meets several days a week in Rozanski Hall. Learning a basic 3 ball pattern can be done in as little as 30 minutes! Checking out the club at least once is a must. You can usually see them practicing outside the lecture rooms just before class too.

JOUG description from Gryphlife: “JOUG (ja-OOG!) is a fun and friendly group of jugglers that meets in Rozanski Hall. Beginners, hobbyists, professionals - all are welcome. Participation is free and we can lend out props. We're involved in community events, shows, and festivals too.”

4. Student Association (for your major)

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This includes organizations like the BMSSA (Biomed), HKSA (HK), NANSSA (Nutrition), etc. Each major at the university has an organization looking out for its student’s interests. Running for a position on the exec (or just attending meetings) is a great way to meet other students in your major!

5. Interhall Council (IHC)

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Each residence hall has its own council, which organizes events and activities for its students to enjoy. The councils meet once a week, and is a great way to meet others in your community. If you were into student council in high school, I’d definitely recommend checking it out!

6. Conversation Cafes

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Conversation cafes are a great way to meet international students without the commitment of being their exchange partner. They are also a great way to get free coffee and snacks once a week. You can sign up to either meet with an international student once a week, or just attend the café’s that they hold in the library once a week! It’s low commitment, and a ton of fun! I recommend it for sure!

Conversation Partner/Café description from Studentlife page: “The Conversation Partners program is for International and English as an Additional Language students who wish to be paired with a student volunteer in order to practice and improve their spoken English. Native English speakers who sign-up for the program, get a chance to connect with someone from a different culture, learning about their culture and traditions, all the while helping them build their conversational English skills. Once paired, Conversation Partners make arrangements with each other about where and when to meet, or they attend a Conversation Café together. Partners can also share cultural perspectives and experiences by attending events both on and off campus.”

7. University of Guelph Debate Society

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Were you a part of the debate team in high school? Our university has one of those too. I’ve heard we aren’t super good, so it’s also pretty low stakes if you decide to join!

From their website: “We are the University of Guelph’s competitive debating team. We compete across North America in both CUSID(Canadian) and APDA(American) circuits. The University of Guelph Debating Society accepts all members, regardless of experience. We regularly travel to compete in prestigious tournaments all across Canada, and host top-notch meetings – as well as awesome socials – all throughout the school year. Joining the Debating Society is a great way to gain and enhance skills such as public speaking, logic, supporting arguments, thinking on the spot, creativity and general communication, which can all be transferred to academics or a workplace setting. It is also a great way to meet new people, have fun and learn more about issues that are relevant, current, and important to you!”

8. First Response Team (FRT)

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From their website: “The University of Guelph First Response Team is a student-run, non profit team of volunteers, and a division of St. John Ambulance. We provide on-call and special event coverage to the University of Guelph community and its visitors in the form of emergency first-aid services. During the Fall and Winter semesters, we provide service to the campus every week night from 5 PM to 8 AM, and 24 hours a day on weekends. Help is seldom more than 1 or 2 minutes away. We operate under the directive of the Campus Community Police and Fire Prevention. In the event of any on campus medical emergency, call extension 2000 from any campus phone. ”

9. College Royal

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College Royal is a giant, student run open-house for the university. It’s also sort of like a fair; although I don’t think there are any rides or games… Most clubs at the university have a booth somewhere on campus, and it is a great opportunity to show off what you’ve been up to! If you’re not a part of any of the clubs participating, then volunteering for the event is a good idea too!

From their website: “College Royal is the largest university open house event of its kind in North America. Each March, the University of Guelph opens its doors to the general public in a campus-wide open house that attracts thousands of visitors every year. For students, College Royal is also a 12-day long event that includes popular events like Super Thursday, Fashion Show and the College Royal Ball. College Royal is a 100% student run and organized event. Whether you are a member of the general public curious to see what goes on at the "university on the hill", or a student looking to become involved, we invite you to join us. Come and join the fun next March!”

10. DECA

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From what I remember in high school, DECA is a mock business competition. You form teams (or compete on your own) in order to solve business case studies. As a biology student, I was never very good at it…

From their website: “DECA is an international student organization that prepares future leaders and entrepreneurs for careers in marketing, finance, hospitality, management, and other professional areas through case competitions and networking events throughout the year. Our mission is to help students develop themselves professionally, provide the opportunities for them to demonstrate their growth, and ensure they are able to differentiate themselves as young professionals.”

11. Games Club

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If you’re into boardgames, table top games (etc), then you might want to check out Games Club. Note videogaming has an entirely separate (though partially affiliated) club. Each year they also hold Gryphcon (a gaming convention held on campus).

From the Gryphcon website: “The Games Club has been a large part of the University of Guelph Campus for more than 30 years! And if that isn't enough of an awesome achievement - they've been hosting Gryphcon for over 25 years as well! The Games Club functions on campus but membership isn't limited to students. They run their own games on campus which includes most of the games you see at Gryphcon. The Games Club can be found on the second floor of the University Centre in room 224 - right beside the big mural labelled "The Black Hole" they share an office with the F.L.A.S.H. (Fantasy Literature Anime Sci-fi Horror) Club - making your visit to the University a one stop Geek Culture experience!”

12. Young Communist League

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I know literally nothing about this club, but felt it was very important you knew of its existence.

From their website: “The Guelph Young Communist League is an organization of committed socialists working against capitalist exploitation and in the people’s movements (peace, student, labour, etc). We have been active since 2004 in the Guelph community and on the University of Guelph campus where we are a CSA club. We are a multi-ethnic organization of students and young workers, employed and unemployed. We work in movements for peace and democracy and against racism, sexism, homophobia, national oppression and the destruction of our environment. We work together for a Canada without exploitation where workers hold political, social and economic power. We recognize that since youth are the future, we must play a vital role in fighting for socialism.”

13. Sign Club

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You can take sign language classes at the university as a part of Sign Club! The class and the textbook don’t cost very much either (roughly $25)! Definitely not an opportunity you should miss out on!

From their website: “The Sign Club currently offeres two different levels of classes: Part 1 and Part 2. The availability of the classes depend on the number of people who register an pay the class fee. The classes run for one hour, once a week for ten weeks. Classes are instructed by a hired teacher who's first language is American Sign Language (ASL). If you are interested in joining the class or have comments, questions or concerns please feel free to email sign@uoguelph.ca and we will respond as quickly as possible!”

14. Outdoors Club

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Do you like doing stuff while being outside? Are you into camping, and portaging, and other Bear Grylls type stuff? You may want to check out Outdoors Club!

From their website: “We’re a student-run organization dedicated to making outdoor activities accessible to everyone, especially the University community. Mostly we organize, supply and lead outdoor wilderness trips. Everything from weekend canoe trips in Algonquin, weeklong hiking expeditions in the Adirondacks to dog sledding trips. All our trips are run at-cost for participants, meaning we don’t make any money from the trips we run. All participants also have access to our equipment (tents, sleeping bags…) too. We run trips for people with varying experience levels and most trips are great for beginners.”

15. LINK

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To my understanding, as a part of LINK you get paired up with an international student, and do tons of fun stuff with them. Check out their website for more info!

From their webpage: “The LINK Program connects new international students, both Full Degree and Exchange, with current Guelph students to help ease the transition into Canadian culture and life at the University of Guelph. The program is open to all new international students at the undergraduate and graduate level.”

Check out the information for any of the clubs I mentioned!

Poultry Club: www.uoguelph.ca/oac/current-students/clubs

Improv: gryphlife.uoguelph.ca/organization/Improv/about

JOUG: gryphlife.uoguelph.ca/organization/jugglers

Conversation Café: studentlife.uoguelph.ca/oia/current-students/conversation-partners-and-cafes

Debate: universityofguelphdebatingsociety.wordpress.com/about/

FRT: www.guelphfrt.com/about-us

College Royal: www.collegeroyalsociety.com/what-is-college-royal.html

Gryphcon: www.gryphcon.org/info.php

DECA: www.decauguelph.com/

Young Communist League: gycl.wordpress.com/

Sign Club: www.uoguelph.ca/~sign/information/thesignclub/

Outdoors Club: guelphoutdoors.com/

LINK: studentlife.uoguelph.ca/oia/international-students/link-program

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