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Your Guide To Surviving The Outdoor Involvement Fair

Another semester, another involvement fair.

After moving the fair to the HUB Lawn for fall 2016 to accommodate more organizations and cut the event down to just one day, the involvement fair is back outside again this year.

You can learn how to survive the involvement fair in a few simple steps, but the outdoor involvement fair is a whole new beast. Here’s what you should know to come out alive:


It might not seem necessary, but heed your mom’s advice on this one: Wear sunscreen. Even if you think you’re only going to be there for a few minutes, one freshman blocking the flow of traffic could leave you trapped in a sea of posterboards. I know from experience you really don’t want to end up with a nasty sun burn before the end of sylly week. This is especially important if you’ll be standing outside for hours to spread the word about your favorite org.

The Right Shoes

After a few hundred thousand students walk through the same path for a few hours, it’s bound to get muddy on the HUB lawn. And it will probably stay mud-barren for a few weeks before the grass eventually grows back. Make sure you wear shoes that are firmly attached to your feet so you’re not slipping and sliding out of them as you make your way through each row of booths.

Org Displays

Wind swept through Happy Valley on the day of the involvement fair last year, so the HUB Lawn was no exception. You haven’t seen anything until you’ve seen a sea of posterboards scattering in every direction. So bring tape, or something to weigh your displays down, or get creative with a fun display to attract students that doesn’t involve a giant vertical piece of cardboard.


Hydration is your best friend. Even if it doesn’t feel like it at the time, standing in the heat can drain your body and you want to make sure you replenish. If you’re advertising your organization to potential new members, grab a drink beforehand to keep with you during your shift. Talking to random strangers — who could be your new best friends — is tiring and dries out your mouth. You don’t want to be unprepared.

While the outdoor involvement fair can be taxing, it’s neat to see an incredible variety of Penn State student organizations all in the same place at the same time. Take your time to look through the organizations you might be interested in and go crazy with email listserv sign-ups. You never know what org you might join to meet your best friend or future spouse!

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About the Author

Elissa Hill

Elissa is a senior public relations major and the managing editor of Onward State. She is from Punxsutawney, PA [insert corny Bill Murray joke here] and considers herself an expert on all things ice cream. Send questions and comments via e-mail ([email protected]) and follow her on Twitter (@ElissaKHill) for more corny jokes.


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