On Saturday, Feb. 8, NSU’s 17th annual CommunityFest will be held around Gold Circle Lake at NSU’s Davie/Fort Lauderdale campus from noon to 4 p.m. This carnival-inspired festival is a celebration of NSU family, pride and spirit that connects students, families and staff with local businesses and organizations. Attracting more than 5,000 participants each year, CommunityFest has served as one of the school’s featured traditions since 2003 when it was first initiated by Michelle Manley, an NSU alumna and now assistant dean of Student Development.
“[CommunityFest] is a great way to bring together all different entities, both the internal and external communities of the university, and to showcase all great departments, student organizations and services NSU offers,” said Christina Rajkumar-Castillo, associate director of Campus Life and Student Engagement.
The festival offers numerous ways for involvement, including volunteer opportunities for students, activity booths hosted by NSU student organizations, donation and sponsorship opportunities for NSU departments and colleges and more. Not only does this enable students and their families to socialize in a festive atmosphere, but it also provides community partners a chance to promote their products and services.
“There are several shifts throughout the day for student and staff volunteers to sign up for, [from] helping with check-in or queue management [to] maintaining and managing the entire event,” explained Rajkumar.
Students who volunteer, in return, will earn service hours and Project Serve Points as individuals or it can count towards IOC (Inter-Organizational Council) service requirements if they are a member of an undergraduate registered student organization. Fin Points will be also awarded to all student organizations that participate in tabling.
Through involvement opportunities and entertainment services such as music, face painting, a petting zoo and bounce houses, CommunityFest is intended to evoke the spiritual values embedded within the university’s traditions and awaken a sense of pride in students.
“[It’s about] us all coming together as a family to put on this event that shows the community how we are one NSU and how we do have such a strong bond,” stated Rajkumar, eagerly sharing her pride. “My favorite part is always the actual execution of the event through which we can see the excitement of everyone and receive positive feedback from them.”
More information including a full-list of available opportunities, participation forms, and cancellation contracts can be found online at https://www.nova.edu/campuslife/communityfest/index.html.
Photo: S. Giradelli