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Skidmore College

Find your niche: Joining a club or starting a new one

April 25, 2024
by Grace Mahon ’26

Skidmore boasts over 100 clubs ranging in focus from multicultural clubs such as the Black Student Union to comedy clubs like the Ad-Libs. Joining a club is a great way to pursue your passions (or find new ones) while connecting with like-minded students. 
 
Still haven’t found what you’re looking for? Not to worry, there’s a third bowl of porridge: Starting your own. All student clubs started somewhere, with people like you who thought, “huh, I wish there was a _____ club.” Students who choose this route create a valuable space for whatever inspires them, no matter how niche, and leave a lasting impact on the campus community. 
 
Here are a few favorite clubs — both new and old — on the campus scene. Many, many more can be found at the biannual festival-like gathering that is club fair.

Tabletop Gaming  

 Tabletop Gaming Club gathers every Friday evening in two separate Skidmore classrooms.

Tabletop Gaming Club gathers every Friday evening in two separate Skidmore classrooms.

Skidmore’s Tabletop Gaming Club has been an important gaming haven for the past decade. The club serves all of campus’s tabletop gaming purposes; attendees play a wide selection of board games and engage in Dungeon & Dragons campaigns with their peers.  
 
Any game you can think of — from classic favorites to the latest sensations — they’ve got it. Though they usually stick to tabletop games, they also host exciting events, including a recent murder mystery game at the Surrey-Williamson Inn.  
 
Will Yarranton ’25, a philosophy major, became the president of the club during his first year and has been keeping the club’s spirit alive ever since. Weekly gaming nights among friends have now become a cherished part of his life on campus.  

Tabletop Club fills an important role on campus, serving as an open, fun and friendly environment for people to go and play some games with friends if they're not out on a Friday night.
Will Yarranton ’25

New members show up all the time, and there are always opportunities to start new games and make friends in the process. Natalie Jones ’26, an English and art history double major, endearingly remarks that the atmosphere is one of “friendly chaos.” Although the excitement is intense, the only real goal is to have a fun time. The club’s welcoming dynamic is what makes it thrive as a center for students seeking adventure and the experience of enjoying a fun game together.  

There’s something for everyone at Club Fair.

There’s something for everyone at Club Fair.

Audubon Society Club 

The Audubon Society Club took flight under the guidance of Lily Acierno ’26 and founder Carissa Pienkowski ’24. The club was founded to promote the nurturing and protection of the natural world. They have since fostered a close relationship with the local Saratoga community, hosting weekly meetings dedicated to learning and conservation efforts. These gatherings are not only educational but also serve as a platform for fun outing events, such as the Southern Adirondack Birdwalk, where members can enjoy a pleasant stroll amidst the nature of Saratoga while birdwatching.  
 
The club aims to teach members about various bird species, offering interactive sessions and hands-on arts and crafts activities. Some activities have included creating bird feeders from pinecones and watching movies like “Rio.” Members unwind watching live trail cam footage of birds projected onto the big screen.  
 
“This club is so much more than just talking about birds. It's getting to know the environment around you, learning to listen to nature and observing the changes it reflects, and building a community.” - Lily Acierno ’26 
 
Audubon Society is open to everyone, especially those with an interest in birds and nature. The club aims to join local efforts to protect and cherish the natural world, while fostering a sense of community and environmental stewardship. 

Figure Drawing Club

A sketch of mine from Figure Drawing Club.

A sketch of mine from Figure Drawing Club.

Skidmore’s Figure Drawing Club has been revitalized due to the collaborative efforts of Professor of Art Paul Satler and Fin Polon ’26, an art and environmental studies major. Fin's passion for figure drawing, which they discovered during their first art course at Skidmore, spurred their desire to create a relaxed and welcoming environment for students to continue exploring this art form beyond the confines of the classroom.  
 
Alek Gideon ’27, a member of the club since its return, says that the club plays a significant role in his life on campus.  
 
"Figure Drawing Club provides a consistent means of drawing practice and an outlet for non-academic creative expression." -Alek Gideon ’27 
 
The club meets every Wednesday evening in the art studio and aims to provide a respite from academic pressures while keeping the spirit of creation alive. Fin plays a pivotal role in organizing these activities and creating a supportive artistic community where anyone can hone their drawing skills from life models.  

Native American Club

Will Bryce ’26 recently founded Skidmore’s Native American Club.

Will Bryce ’26 recently founded Skidmore’s Native American Club.

Skidmore’s Native American Club is newly emerging thanks to its founder, Will Bryce ’26, a history and international affairs major, who is also minoring in German. Will founded the club in order to raise awareness of the presence of Native Americans at Skidmore and promote appreciation for their culture and history — as well as that of other indigenous cultures worldwide.  
 
The club notes that campus is on historically Mohawk land and actively engages its members in discussions about Native culture, art, and contemporary issues facing Indigenous communities. At recent meetings, they have delved into topics ranging from traditional rituals to modern challenges.  
 
They have also welcomed Indigenous poets and speakers like Cheyenne poet Lance Henson and acclaimed storyteller Joe Bruchac at events, aiming to create a space where Indigenous voices are heard and valued. Their upcoming agenda promises a variety of enriching experiences including lectures by Mohawk members, visits to local Indigenous communities, and collaborative efforts with academic departments.  

 

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