Dec. 4, 2019
Moore School sophomore Alisa Berindea started her own student organization earlier this semester when she realized out of the 500+ organizations, UofSC doesn’t have a student book club.
Berindea, a marketing major, said she has always loved to read in her spare time, but she found it difficult to make time for it when she came to college.
“It was so hard to keep up with leisurely reading throughout the school year because I got caught up in homework and friends,” Berindea said. “Those are both very important, but so is reading.”
As Berindea reflected on her freshman year, she realized she wanted to join a book club to motivate her to read throughout the semester. However, when she checked the campus organizations’ list, she saw that there was not a book club on campus.
“I knew that other students like me would appreciate having [a book club], so I began to create the organization myself,” Berindea said.
There are many steps to starting a student organization on campus. The group organizer must work with the Leadership and Service Center and find a faculty advisor, recruit at least seven members, construct bylaws and apply to Garnet Gate, UofSC’s official student organization website, before becoming a recognized campus organization.
Berindea said the skills she learned from the Moore School like leadership, organization, administration, communication and financial analytics helped her develop and implement her book club idea.
“I view the book club as a mini business organization,” Berindea said.
Berindea networked with fellow students on social media and Garnet Gate to promote the new club. She also set up a table at the university’s beginning-of-the-semester organization fair and advertised the club to students walking by. She said marketing the book club has helped her practice her marketing skills.
Berindea said the club was overwhelmed with student interest with more than 80 students expressing a desire to join the club at her various organization and tabling fairs; 25 new members attended the first meeting, and 35 are signed up to read the October book selections. The book club currently has more than 50 Instagram followers.
“The book club really inspired me to get more involved on campus and really put myself out there in terms of meeting new people and being a good president to the [club’s] members,” Berindea said. “I want this club to be a comfortable place for students to be open about their opinions and emotions and share their thoughts on literature and various topics.”
The book club is not Berindea’s only student involvement. She is also a member of the Moore School’s Rising Scholars program. Through this diversity and inclusion initiative, Berindea said she has found a passion for friendship and finding one’s community in college.
Rising Scholars is a Moore School excellence initiative to develop future business leaders and bridge the opportunity gap for underserved students from South Carolina. Moore School students who are selected for the program share a passion for business and a commitment to the school’s core values. To be designated as Rising Scholars, students must demonstrate a record of excellence, resiliency, teamwork and integrity — characteristics that are fundamental to future business leaders.
Looking beyond college, Berindea hopes to work in marketing for an international luxury or high fashion brand. She said she hopes to lead successful campaigns and contribute to the overall advancement of the company.
“I chose marketing because I am fascinated by how advertising and media in general influence our decisions and the economy,” she said. “I really enjoy working with others to spread messages to a community and make a difference while utilizing the constantly changing and adapting media.”
Learn more about the UofSC book club on Instagram @uscbookclub.