Winona State University's Newspaper since 1919

The Winonan

Winona State University's Newspaper since 1919

The Winonan

Winona State University's Newspaper since 1919

The Winonan

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An all-school event not to be missed: I ❤ WSU Day

Opening+up+boxes+with+purple+cotton+candy%2C+members+of+the+WSU+Giving+Day+group+moves+boxes+to+their+booth+in+the+WSU+Courtyard+before+I+%E2%9D%A4+WSU+day+on+September+6th.+
Elly Herrick
Opening up boxes with purple cotton candy, members of the WSU Giving Day group moves boxes to their booth in the WSU Courtyard before I ❤ WSU day on September 6th.

From the Winona State University marching band to live action angry birds, I ❤ WSU day has become an anticipated and exciting event. Starting in the Fall of 2021, Tracy Rahim the Associate Director Student Activities & Leadership at WSU wanted to find a way to truly welcome students to campus after COVID-19. Rahim felt that during COVID-19, students lost out on many opportunities to connect with campus and each other. This soon turned into the preparation for I ❤ WSU day.

“It started off in 2021 with a small club fair with about 16 campus partners who I asked to join in on a new adventure,” Rahim said. “Fast forward to 2023 and we had 60 clubs and 33 campus partners from across campus that stretched across the entire courtyard.”

Before the event can even happen, much planning and consideration goes into the planning. In addition to advertising, Rahim has had a hectic week for this event. With the help of many others this event can be possible. For I ❤ WSU day Rahim focuses on mapping out the event, but most importantly she elevates a simple club fair to an interactive as well as informative event.

“I spent a lot of time mapping out where everyone would go based on logistical needs and making sure we didn’t have similar booths next to each other,” Rahim said. “I then had to translate that into a map for our GMWs so they could get all the tables laid out accordingly as they started setting everything up early in the morning before I even got to campus.”

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Early in the morning of the event, tables were set up by GMWs, Facilities staff, and helpers in the Student Activities Center. Rahim worked with her graphic design intern to create a visual map of the event since it has gotten so large over the years.

“I always look forward to seeing the crowds of students as they move across the courtyard and trying new things, interacting with a campus partner they may not necessarily stop by to visit, connecting with friends, and finding new ways they can get involved on campus,” Rahim said. “We spend a lot of time and energy in welcoming our new students during Welcome Week in August so I want all of our students to have a fun experience to reconnect about why they love WSU.”

During the events students wandered around the courtyard to collect prizes, free items, play games, and more. Third year student and Alliance of Student Organizations (ASO) Director Hannah Herman has various responsibilities for I ❤ WSU Day. Prior to the event, she kept track and encouraged clubs to register for the event. Similar to Rahim, Herman informs clubs of the guidelines and other important information.

“I sit at a table in front of the Gazebo and take attendance as clubs and organizations start arriving,” Herman said. “I like this part the best because I get a chance to speak with and meet the club officers before the hecticness of the day begins.”

Following a printout copy, Herman has a master list of all the clubs that per-regesited for the event. Before the event begins, Herman takes attendance of the clubs and throughout the event she makes sure it all runs smoothly. She makes sure clubs are in the correct space, they have all that they need for the event, and they have all their questions answered about the event.

“On the day of I ❤ WSU Day, my responsibilities are setting up and tearing down the various club fair flags that can be seen around the Gazebo at the time of the event,” Herman said. “Setting up is one of the more time-consuming parts of getting ready for I ❤ WSU Day. Tracy Rahim-who is my advisor and the reason why all of this runs smoothly- and I lug out the 7 club fair flags that then need to be set up.”

Even though it’s hard work, Herman looks forward to talking with club officers and members to learn more about them and their club. As an ASO director, it’s important to her to maintain a good relationship with student clubs.

“Getting to know the people that I work closely with is very important to me, and there’s not a better day to do it than I ❤ WSU Day. It is a celebration of our love, loyalty, and appreciation for all that WSU has to offer to the community.” Herman said. “I ❤ WSU Day is important to me because it brings together the community through games, food, and informational booths. There is truly something for everyone at I ❤ WSU Day and everyone just seems to have the best time.”

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About the Contributor
Elly Herrick, Online Editor
Elly Herrick (She/They) is currently the online/social media editor, business manager, features writer, and photographer. Try saying that five times fast. Herrick also works as the Communications Director on Student Senate, a 2023 Orientation Leader, and was newly added on a Tuesday 7-10p.m timeslot on KQAL. They are also the Social media manager for the WSU Pre-Athletic Training Club. Herrick is from Kenosha, Wisconsin, and is a second-year student at Winona State University studying Mass Communications: Public Relations with a minor in Advertising, Photography, and Creative Digital Media. They love following challenging and fulfilling stories. They also have a strong passion for writing and giving others a voice. Herrick loves to travel and over the summer, they traveled to Greece, Italy, and Barcelona. They are now saving up and planning on going to New Zealand this winter with their Aunt. Outside of school, they love taking the train and seeing live concerts with friends. They also love sharks and a good book!    

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