ECC Snaps & Chats About Student Life

Vanessa Passo, Staff Writer

Elgin Community College’s Student Life held their very first Snap & Chat Leadership Workshop geared toward leaders and fellow members of ECC student organizations.

On Sept. 23, a small group of about 15 ECC student members of organizations gathered in Alumni Room (B182) for food, games and informational overviews of Student Life and clubs.

“Being involved [in Student Life] gives you the opportunity to make you a better person, better student and a better person in the community,” said Gaea Atta, Student Life coordinator.

The workshop, held from 1:00 p.m. to 2:30 p.m., focused on experiences outside of the classroom at ECC. With over 20 clubs and organizations, ECC has many opportunities for students to grow as students and community members, primarily influenced by Student Life.

“Throughout the last fiscal year, student life has held 1,049 events,” said Ali-Reza Kashani, coordinator of first year programs. “Of those events, we had 18,703 participants.”

ECC students possess many benefits from participating in these events. Meeting new people, enhancing leadership skills and discovering transferable skills for future careers are just a few of the many positive outcomes of being involved in clubs and organizations on campus.

“We both started as students here at ECC,” said Atta. “Student Life is a great way to get involved, and by joining clubs or organizations you never know what could happen.”

Clubs and organizations around campus are offered in wide varieties. Students have the opportunity to chose from joining groups of students who share similar interests, focusing on primary aspects such as social/recreational, academic/program specific, cultural and/or honors organizations.

Student Life also offers plenty of opportunities for student leaders and members to volunteer through programs and events, as made known by Atta and Kashani.

“[Students] can tie volunteering into their mission for the semester”, said Kashani. “We hold a lot of cool events (like Project Backpack where we fill backpacks with basic school supplies for students in the district) and it’s a great way to get involved not only in the school but the community.”

Whether it be volunteer programs, new student events, or academic services, Atta and Kashani left an everlasting tone that Student Life exudes achievement and enjoyable involvement.

ECC alumni, Gabrielle Passo, 25, was once a member of the Student Life’s Phi Theta Kappa International Honor Society, and reflects back on her time spent within the club.

“I loved it! [The honor society] made me feel like I was a part of something,” said Passo. “It was really awesome getting to meet new people outside of a classroom environment.”

Her involvement within the club left her feeling accomplished, as well as allowing her to enjoy her  her time at ECC.

“I was never involved much at school, I just went to class and went home and that’s about it but I decided to join PTK and I’m so glad I did,” said Passo. “ECC’s Student Life is very welcoming and makes you feel a part of a unit. The school offers any kind of club that you could imagine that fits your niche. It helps you be able to communicate with your peers and socialize with people with your same views.”

Student Life strives for all members around campus to feel as though they have a place of belonging when among a club or organization. Various workshops and programs are offered in hopes to not only expand the knowledge of student’s already involved in Student Life, but students who are looking to meet new people, try new experiences and add value to their college careers.

The next Snap & Chat Student Leader Workshop will be held on Friday, Oct. 14. in Alumni Room (B182) from 1:00 p.m.-2:00 p.m.