Coming to a theater near you!

Taking on the Student Activities Fair

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August 18, 2016

11:21 PM

Getting to the College of William and Mary is no small feat, I know. But now, finally, you’re here. You’re done with all the essays, all the transcripts and all the recommendation letters. So congrats! Take a breather. Enjoy the bizarre experience that is orientation. Meet people, make friends, explore the campus. And after all of that, be sure to come out to the Activities Fair and sign up for as many random things as you possibly can.

Regardless of who you are or what you enjoy, there are others here who feel the same way, and getting plugged into some of the amazing student groups on campus is a fantastic way to do that.

You may be hearing this from a lot of people, but my hope is that if you hear it enough you’ll take it to heart. There are so many things to get involved in, from middle school tutoring with Project Phoenix to the Heavy Metal Club. Regardless of who you are or what you enjoy, there are others here who feel the same way, and getting plugged into some of the amazing student groups on campus is a fantastic way to do that.

But I didn’t really write this just to say that. Sure, if you love to sing, join an a cappella group. If you love reading, join the short story club. If you to love to write, maybe sign up for the Flat Hat. Then walk a couple booths down and sign up for the Spoken Word club. Or the Salsa Club (the dance). Or the Cheese Club (the food). Not because it’s what you love, or because you did it in high school, but because it’s not, and because you didn’t.

Throw caution to the wind and do something weird and nuts that you’ve never attempted, because this is the time. This is the place.

It’s normal to take the things that are familiar and continue them in college. It’s better to throw caution to the wind and do something weird and nuts that you’ve never attempted, because this is the time. This is the place. And that goes beyond clubs. Just because you didn’t play softball in high school doesn’t mean you can’t try out for the club team. Just because you don’t consider yourself a dancer doesn’t mean you shouldn’t audition for Syndicate, or Pointe Blank. Just because you don’t think you’re “the type” doesn’t mean you shouldn’t go to a few rush events or talk to people in Greek life.

In fact, you should do all of those things. It’s so easy to get caught up in all the things you know you’re interested in that you miss all the things you haven’t given a shot yet. You can always remove yourself from an email list, but you can never get this time back again. So go crazy and you might surprise yourself.

Please, please, please, don’t limit yourself. Because as cheesy as it sounds, you’re the only one who can.

When I was in your shoes just a year ago, I did something that was not only out of my comfort zone, it was entirely out of character. I auditioned for I.T. (Improvisational Theatre). I’d never done comedy before, I wasn’t involved in my high school theatre department, and I’d never auditioned for anything in my life. Honestly, I’m not sure how I even made myself do it. But I saw them on a whim, thought they were hilarious, and decided to give it a shot.

And on a whim, I got in. On a whim, that troupe became my closest group of friends on campus. I met a ton more people in the theatre department and even tried out for Shakespeare in the Dark. Improv became the dominant force driving my college experience, and I couldn’t be happier with where I am now. All on a whim. So please, please, please, don’t limit yourself. Because as cheesy as it sounds, you’re the only one who can.

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  • Rick Stevenson