For the Interclub Council (ICC), Street Week is a culmination of more than a year’s worth of planning, consensus-building, and focusing on improving the undergraduate experience. It concludes an entire semester of intense club recruitment, ICC outreach, and months of working with club graduate boards, comprising passionate University alumni, to alter the admissions timeline. This has resulted in the biggest change to club admissions since the online portal went live in 2013. Our hope is that the result is a time of excitement for prospective and current members alike.
While the ICC’s prominent 2018 goal was to expand on eating club accessibility culturally and financially, one of our other main goals was to shift the campus perspective from Bicker alone to a Street-wide exploration of all 11 clubs. Here’s what we did:
Clubs began hosting recruitment events in October, opening their doors and giving a taste of membership benefits. In November, the ICC organized its first “Sophomore Week,” which consisted of a full week of Q&A sessions during late meal in Frist Campus Center and a Street-wide open house on a sunny Sunday afternoon when sophomores could get a tours of full facilities, meet members, and hang out in the different spaces casually. Individual clubs continued to host recruitment events throughout the semester, casting wide nets via emails to the residential college listservs. In January, during reading period, the Office of the Dean of Undergraduate Students and the 2021 class government of Undergraduate Student Government helped bring clubs, co-ops, and independent representatives together with the Sophomore Choice Book and the Eating Options Info Session, held in Whig Hall.
Despite this expansive list of outreach, we still wanted to ensure that sophomores would not have questions that were unanswered — or worse, answered with misinformation. In response, the ICC launched Princeton Eats, a Tumblr page inspired by Real Talk Princeton, where representatives from every eating option have a platform to answer students’ anonymous questions.
Street Week, as the name suggests, is a time to explore Street-wide. There is a space for every student at Princeton who wishes to join a club. While registration for selective clubs is limited to a max of two, due to the time constraints of the Bicker process, the ICC wanted to expand awareness about opportunities for open club exploration. First, the clubs worked with their grad boards throughout 2018 on streamlining the timing of the sign-in process to align with the selective process. Second, we established our first social media accounts to get the word out about all events during Street Week (@princeton_icc). Third, we extended the ranking window from 24 hours to 48 hours, allowing sophomores more time to explore open and selective clubs equally and to reflect. Finally, we adjusted the functionality of “prefs” so that the sign-ins would be ranked right along with any selective clubs.
In doing so, my hope is that all sophomores feel like they can seriously consider a sign-in club, not just as a backup, but as their top choice. This change means that every single sophomore that registers on the ICC website will be placed in a club on Friday morning; everyone will be welcomed into a club community.
At all 11 clubs, we want to get to know you, we want you to get to know us, and at the end of the day, we want you to feel like there is a home for you on Prospect Avenue.
Hannah Paynter is a senior from Lyme, Conn. She is the president of the ICC and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.