Student Organizations at Hope!

The August heat swirls in the air as students across all grade levels stroll through the Pine Grove, stuffing their backpacks with all kinds of swag including stickers, candy, and bracelets. Tables line the pathway each with their own respective trifold posters decorated in anything from glitter to flags to bold lettering and everything in between, each reflecting a distinct personality, brand, and mission. Student leaders, wearing shirts with logos matching that of their table swag and promotional posters, standby as they hold out printed QR codes while exclaiming, “Sign-up today!”  

The annual Student Involvement Fair electrifies an energy throughout campus that reverberates into each student organization during the year. As a freshman, this experience greatly exhilarated me, and it still continues to do so each year. Coming in as a new student, I felt as if I were trick-or-treating on Halloween, yet there were only treats and no tricks! I was mesmerized by the breadth of student organizations available. From Garden Club to Student Activities Committee to Habitat for Humanity and anything else you can imagine, I wanted to be involved in it all! I signed up for practically every club whose table I had visited. After trekking back to my res hall with an acquired drawstring bag from the fair, full of pamphlets and goodies, I had not realized the enormity of organizations I had signed up for until I opened my email inbox, finding numerous Google Form confirmation emails, verifying my membership. 

While I have cut back on the amount of organizations I am participating in since my freshman year, I continue to feel energized and amazed at the wide-array of the College’s student organizations. The College currently has over 70 student organizations. Here is just a sample of a few: Chess Club, Hope Taekwondo, Hope College Formula Racing, Multicultural Student Organizations, Lego Club, Pre-Health Professionals Club, Sailing Club, WTHS Radio, and so much more! There is truly a club for any student. A student can even start their own club, too! 

So far in my three years at Hope, I have been a part of a variety of student organizations. During my freshman year, I participated in the decorations committee of Dance Marathon, which is an organization that raises money for a local children’s hospital through a variety of fundraisers throughout the year that culminates in a 24-hour dance-a-thon event. As part of the decorations committee, I helped to transform the gymnasium for the event into an inviting space for the Miracle Children, streaming the area with astronauts, planets, and stars to reflect the outer space theme of that year’s marathon. In attending the 24-hour dance marathon, I witnessed the radiant joy of the children despite their unimaginable hardships. Additionally, last year, I served as the student lead of Hope College’s Economics and Business club. In this role, I helped create events aimed most especially at facilitating engagement with first and second year students. Events included local and national company visits to cities such as Holland, Detroit, and Atlanta, along with fellowship opportunities to build greater community within the department’s student body. Since last semester and continuing this year, I am the Co-Editor-in-Chief of the College’s student newspaper – The Anchor. As an organization, we produce weekly electronic stories along with two print editions each semester. The Anchor seeks to foster campus-wide awareness of student and faculty stories as well as societal news.

Each of these experiences have shaped my college experience and my formation. To me, Hope College student organizations are foundational to the College. Each organization cultivates the community, culture, and camaraderie of Hope College, of which I am grateful to join in.

Published by Madeline Kenney

Class of 2025 Hometown: Livonia, MI Majors: Biology and Business Minor: Classical Studies

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