My View

Kraft recollects GM Week 2013

Even with the weather this past week ranging from drizzles, to sunshine, to hail, to flat out downpours, nothing could rain on the parade that was Grand Marshal Week 2013. While I was unable to attend all of the events, I was thankful for the time I did have to enjoy the free food and activities.

On Monday, I conquered the rock climbing wall and emerged victorious from the inflatable obstacle course. Wednesday brought another day filled with exciting goings-on. I was very pleased with my free barbecue lunch, and even in the rain, the Rensselaer Music Association Jazz Festival and Ground Zero Open Mic provided enjoyable musical entertainment. My friends and I were able to play a round of laser tag (my first experience with the game!) and of course we enjoyed having the whole day off from classes.

Thursday was voting day, and I picked up my fourth and final GM Week mug. I gorged myself on free donuts and cookies (thanks to Phalanx Honor Society and the students candidates) while running to get my picture taken for weR PROUD with the women’s Frisbee team. I visited the new Multicultural Lounge in the Rensselaer Union to see how it looked, but mainly so I could add a free cupcake to the list of healthy foods I had consumed that day. Later that evening, my friends and I attended the A Cappella Free-4-All and thoroughly enjoyed performances from all four campus a cappella groups. The variety of songs performed made the show appealing to a wide audience. It was certainly a great way to avoid homework for a couple more hours!

As Friday rolled around, bringing hoards of rain with it, I was busy helping set up for Earth Fest. While all students would have loved to be outside, none of the involved clubs let the weather dampen the members’ spirits. Mother’s Wine Emporium was packed with sustainability-minded clubs and students who wanted to learn more about them. Among the clubs present were Ecologic, Terra Café, Engineers for a Sustainable World, Engineers Without Borders, Vasudha, and Sigma Gamma Epsilon (the honor society for the earth sciences). From these tables, students received free local food samples, were able to decorate pots and plant a flower, tie dye shirts, make pet rocks, learn about different club projects, and construct a recycled notebook. The diverse activities drew in many interested students who were avoiding work and the ongoing precipitation.

On Saturday, the election results were released as throngs of high school students and their parents swarmed around campus. Different clubs strutted their stuff at the Accepted Students Activities Fair, attempting to recruit new members, but mostly just talking to enthusiastic parents, while the high school students stood awkwardly nearby. All in all, I found GM Week 2013 to be a huge success. The numerous activities were a release from the normal stresses of student life; it was great to have time to relax with friends. I congratulate the newly elected candidates and wish them the best of luck!

Deborah Kraft

GEOL ’13