SAA Brings Joy to Campus
by Eliza Scharfstein on Friday, October 17th, 2014
It’s the weekend, and campus is booming with fun, especially at night. Students are laughing hysterically as a comedian performs in King Theatre or are singing their hearts out at live band karaoke. They are tie-dying t-shirts on the quad or munching on treats at the open snack bar. Student Activities Association (SAA) aims to make weekends on campus full of excitement. These activities and others like them, which generally take place on Friday and Saturday evenings, attract day students and boarders alike.
At the back-to-school dance each September, students become fashion designers in their own right by cutting white t-shirts into interesting shapes and decorating them with glow paint before heading into Wigg Hall for a night of fun and dancing. Director of Student Activities, Ms. Reiser, enjoys the back-to-school dance because she has “so much fun watching the kids have fun.” She also lists the hypnotist as an annual event that she looks forward to.
According to Ms. Reiser, planning and advertising all these events takes serious work and dedication. This year, SAA is comprised of 17 students led by four people: Michaela Brickley (I), Steven Char (I), Arooshee Giroti (I), and Erika Lamere (I). Michaela explains that in a typical Monday meeting, “we [SAA] review what happened last weekend, and we talk about whether things went well… and then we start talking about what the plans are for the upcoming weekend.” Michaela also says that each SAA head is on-duty for one weekend a month, and at the meetings, they ask the Board for volunteers to assist with set-up and cleanup.
Coming up with possible events requires creativity, and, although SAA hosts many staple, highly-anticipated events throughout the year, new activities pop up all the time. Ms. Reiser says that after the Illusionist Leon Etienne performed in King on October 3rd, “we have… booked other entertainers through the same company, and they’re supposed to be awesome.” When brainstorming events, Ms. Reiser explains, “I let all the kids know…it’s going to be a brainstorm session—come with two ideas for the time that we’re trying to plan for, and then we just share them and write them all down.”
Each week, students see the familiar, hand-made banner on the railing in the Student Center that lists weekend activities. On Thursdays and Fridays, on the way to Forbes, students walk over colorful sidewalk chalk with the event schedule for the upcoming days or hear announcements—usually in the form of a skit or performance—during assemblies about SAA’s plans for the weekend. For anyone who signs up, SAA sends texts with reminders of events before they take place.
To keep up with social media, SAA has also created an Instagram this year called @SAAfortheacad. Erika explains that they “are planning on making it more active, kind of like the MA Athletics Instagram.” Erika also reveals a new feature geared towards parents, sharing that “before each month we’re sending out… a list of all the activities for said month to all the parents, so day students can get rides and it will be easier.”
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