University of New Mexico students packed the Student Union Building on Aug. 17 for Friday Night Live.
The event — planned by the Student Activity Center — featured games, dancing, karaoke, henna tattoos and food. The SUB Ballroom was converted into a laser tag field and at times the line extended past the center of the SUB.
Burritos, taquitos, pizza, vegetarian and meat pinwheels were available through UNM Catering, free of charge.
Chartered organizations began setting up their tables at 7 p.m. and by 8 p.m. students entered a maze of more than 50 tables of UNM chartered clubs, greeted by club officers offering flyers and snacks.
Chartered organizations included representatives from the Biology Undergraduate Society of UNM (BUGS), the UNM World Affairs Delegation and various greek life communities on campus.
Charlene Reames, the president of the Korean Club hosted a table at the event.
Reames, a senior majoring in languages with a minor in communication, said the goal of the club is to represent Korean culture in New Mexico through pop culture, history and food.
“Food is one of the best ways to look at a culture — we have a bingsu picnic coming up; bingsu is Korean shaved ice. That will be in the spring,” she said. She also mentioned that the club will host a “Chuseok Thanksgiving” potluck in November.
Friday Night Live is a UNM tradition thanks in part to the games, the events and the types of food, said Rudy Montoya, a student activities specialist with SAC.
He has been a part of SAC for a little more than 10 years and has helped organize Friday Night Live for the past four years.
Montoya said events like this are important to students.
“We find that when students actually get connected to each other in the University, they’re a lot more willing to access resources and be successful,” he said.
Standing in a swelling line for henna tattoos was Manuel Deherrera — a freshman majoring in chemical engineering. He first heard about the event through a flyer given to him at orientation.
“(Friday Night Live) is pretty cool, I’ve actually learned a lot of stuff, met some new people and saw old people I met in orientation,” Deherrera said.
Chatting with students and chartered organizations was ASUNM President Becka Myers, a senior majoring in political science. She said she thinks events like this are imperative to the student culture.
“I think they really bring a sense of pride to being a lobo and to be here at UNM. I think that in a way can help shape the community by bringing us all together,” she said.
Anthony Jackson is a freelance reporter with the Daily Lobo. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @TonyAnjackson.