Lack of activities on SAIT campus during evenings and weekends is leaving students wishing for more but not making enough effort to make it happen.
Caroline MacKenzie, the Student Life Vice-President for the SAIT Student Association (SAITSA) would like to see more demand for activities because of the benefits it can provide to students socially and academically.
“It is a way of keeping active with your student body and a chance to get to meet people,” she said, “To top it off you will already have one thing in common with the other individuals who participate so it will be easier to build those new friendships that can possibly help out students with networking.”
According to the students who were interviewed, whether they participate in any sort of activity depends on whether it peaks their interest or not.
This leaves the question up in the air whether there is an actual demand for student activities during the evenings and weekends.
MacKenzie feels that the demand possibly exists, but students are not necessarily speaking up.
She added that it is hard to find the time, space, and especially manpower to organize more events and recreational activities.
“If the students said we want something other than a bar and a gym to work out in, whether it is a lounge space with pool tables or whatever students are asking for, it would be nice if someone could take the helm on that.”
As it stands right now, there are essentially two things a student can do on campus to wind down after a day of class or studying: go to the recreation centre, or go to the bar.
Going to either of these places seem to be what all the students know about doing during the evening, perhaps because the idea has been ingrained in their minds since their student orientation.
“If you are a student and don’t know where the bar is, you suck,” said Jordan Crawford, a Radio and Television News Broadcast student.
Mackenzie noted that the recreation centre encompasses more than just going to the gym.
She pointed out the other various activities such as playing a casual game of basketball with your friends or going to the pool are just a few other activities that are available there that students may not think about.
It is not to say that there is not any other activities on campus during the evenings, however, most of these activities are private events being held by the various clubs on campus.
Those activities that are open to non-club members are often not advertised very well or run on an infrequent basis.
One point that seemed to be clear in regards to student activities is that they are not advertised very well, not just for evening activities, but for the ones that take place during the day as well.
“Every time there is an event in the Heart building, I wouldn’t have known about it unless I walked through there and saw it as it was happening,” said Mohamed Kaid, an Automation and Instrumentation student.
Crawford feels that his fellow students are seeing posters but not reading them, and suggested sidewalk billboards and more in-your-face tactics in order to reach students.
It is hard to say when or if SAIT will see more activities during evenings and weekends, but at the moment there are a few ideas that have been suggested.
Phil Johnson, a Marketing and Business student who only comes to school to go to class and leaves right after, said he might be willing to stick around if there were a bigger intermural program with more variety of sports.
Ruby Sidhu, an Administrative Information Management student, said she would like to see more drop-in dance and exercise classes, as she feels she is often too busy to commit to a registered class through the recreation centre.