An Overview of Milton’s Newest Clubs
by Nina Taneja on Friday, February 26th, 2016
Milton is known for its diverse community and its students for their diverse range of interests. These interests are showcased not only in classes, but also in clubs on campus. Milton’s website cites 39 student-run clubs and organizations, but several new clubs have sprung up on campus, sparking excitement from the community.
Te Palandjian (II) started Coffee for Change last spring, in what she calls a “two-and-a-half-week trial.” Coffee for Change allows students to follow their entrepreneurial passions by running a coffee stand. All proceeds go to a charity chosen by members of the Milton community. Due to its success, the club will continue this year and started selling coffee and other drinks last Monday, February 22nd.
Palandjian described her idea for the business, saying, “I noticed a lack of quality coffee on campus” and “thought that if I could take the demand for coffee and drive it towards something more meaningful than profiting big coffee organizations, I should!” Clubs on campus like Coffee for Change seem to have distinct missions; Palandjian insists that Coffee for Change’s intention is to “support charities Milton students feel invested in” and to provide both quality coffee on campus as well as a unique opportunity for community service.
Jacob Aronoff (I) started Programming Club this year, which meets Thursdays during activities period in the Programming Lab in the AMC basement. Jacob, passionate about programming since his freshman year, noticed a lack of enthusiasm surrounding programming at Milton when he was an underclassman. Thus, he desired “to make a club for anyone who loved to learn and talk about programming, so that anyone who was yearning for those interactions I wanted as a freshman [could] finally be satisfied.”
Programming Club’s mission is twofold. First, it hopes to bring together students interested in learning more about advanced programming, including new languages (like Python, Swift, etc.), libraries, frameworks, and concepts. It also aims to help and connect with students who may be having trouble in programming classes or just looking for feedback, says Aronoff.
Programming Club seems to be flourishing and has had an impact on programming classes at Milton—Jacob reports that he’s “seen many of the conversations in the club get carried into programming classes, which gets other kids interested and excited.” Programming Club, advised by Mr. Hales, has a growing number of regular members and is sending 10 members to a Hackathon at MIT this upcoming weekend.
Coffee for Change has an entrepreneurial attraction about it, as Palandjian describes that its board members and volunteers get “work experience handling people, numbers, and issues that arise in start-ups.” Programming Club empowers students towards programming and computer science. There have also been art focused clubs that have arisen at Milton recently looking to increase the presence of the arts in students lives.
Knitting Club, which brings together avid knitters and was started by Siena Nagel-Thompson (II) and Alexa Perlov (II), had its first meeting last week. Knitting Club has a philanthropic aspect as well; Nagel-Thompson describes that the club’s purpose is to “sell the things we knit and donate the proceeds to charity.”
In addition, Art with a Social Conscience had previously existed at Milton, but was revived last year by Rika Ichinose (I) and Te Palandjian (II). Art with a Social Conscience consists of a group of students who “appreciate other students’ art, learn about art movements or individual artists, and enjoy creating their own art,” says Palandjian. She says, “The purpose of reviving Art with a Social Conscience was to get people to think about why art is socially important to us, on a personal, local, and global level”.
Clubs at Milton tend to offer spaces to learn and be creative beyond the classroom but also have a social aspect. Nagel-Thompson finds that “Clubs can provide safe and relaxing spaces” through which she has “gotten to know people that I probably would’ve never become friends with.” Whether new or old, clubs add an unmatched, student-motivated element to education and fun at Milton.
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