Irvington Clubs Return to Campus with New Adjustments



Amrita Khokhar (11) attends Irvington BAStA’s intro meeting on Sept. 20th, 2021.

FUSD’s return to in-person learning for the 2021-2022 school year has allowed Irvington clubs to resume in-person activities and operations. Club councils have implemented new logistical changes and COVID-19 safety protocols. 

ICC (Inter-Club Council) oversees and manages the activities of Irvington clubs, but SIA (Students In Action) only pertains to service clubs at Irvington. SIA is a program for schools created by Multiplying Good, an organization focused on supporting student community service. 

This year, ICC will no longer require clubs to use the Minga app to track member participation, which many students found frustrating and difficult to use.

“We realized Minga wasn’t user-friendly,” explained SIA Director Nicole Zhi (12). “It kind of felt like a chore for clubs to have to use this platform that a lot of people weren’t really interested in.” Instead, clubs will use Google Classroom to promote events and communicate with members, since students are familiar with using the app for school assignments. 

ASG has also introduced an improved application process for clubs. Previously, ICC introduced new clubs in their monthly meetings for attendees to approve or reject through voting. During this procedure, ICC was unable to answer specific queries about these emerging clubs, rendering the application process ineffective. Now, when ICC approves a new club, the club operates as a “trial club” for a period of three months. After the three-month period, ICC will hold an open forum for existing clubs to voice concerns and opinions about the new club instead of voting to approve it. 

“We really wanted to avoid any hassle and we got complaints about how the process was unnecessarily long,” said ICC President Nicolo Biscocho (12). “Eliminating our middleman role has really helped reduce [this strain].”

The previous school year was fraught with challenges such as being unable to conduct in-person events and interact in real time, struggles that continue impacting various clubs. For instance, Irvington Mock Trial had to attend competitions over Zoom last year and will continue to do so this year.

“Competitions were the largest incentive for people to join Mock Trial, since it was like being an actual courtroom, and that’s what made it unique and fun. But over Zoom, the feeling is definitely different,” described Mock Trial President Selina Song (11).

Despite holding certain events online, Mock Trial continues to attract new members. Other clubs, such as Irvington Key Club, have struggled with online school’s impact on new membership.

“The only people who know what Key Club is through and through are a select number of current seniors, who were the only ones who completed a full year of in person school before the pandemic hit,” said Key Club President Nicole Huynh (12). “So freshmen, sophomores, and juniors have no idea what Key Club is, which is why we’re going to try really hard this year to publicize more.”

Irvington’s club councils encourage clubs meeting on campus to follow COVID-19 guidelines such as wearing masks indoors, frequently using hand sanitizer, and physically distancing as much as possible. Irvington DECA is physically separating its members into groups during meetings to prevent transmission of COVID-19.

In the event that Irvington returns to distance learning, ICC, SIA, and Irvington clubs are well prepared to operate online because of prior experience last year. Clubs used technology to manage clubs and conducting meetings over Zoom. However, many clubs would prefer not to meet online.

“Do you ever talk to your classmates in Zoom meetings?” asked Irvington Chess Club President Chenyi Zhao (12). “It doesn’t really happen. I just really hope that we don’t go back to being online.”