Speed Friending Fundraising Event Kindles New Friendships and Raises Money

Emily Qian ’19 was one participant at the Speed Friending event in Susie’s, which featured sweet desserts and conversation.

“Ready, set, go!” Claudine Waggoner ’20 declared, commencing Round One of the Speed Friending event. Susie’s immediately erupted with clamor as participants rushed to ask questions. Nearby, eager attendees wait in a line to buy ice cream sundaes and brownies.

Waggoner, a Co-Head of Habitat for Humanity, helped organized this event with last Friday to raise money to help build homes. Waggoner hoped Speed Friending would be a fun way to raise money and give students the opportunity to socialize.

“I think we spend a lot of time in our rooms watching Netflix and not talking to people, and whenever you walk into a room, a bunch of people are always on their phones. So I think to have this event… where people get to interact face to face… can be something that brings us closer together as a community,” said Waggoner.

According to Addie Osula ’21, a board member of Habitat for Humanity, the Speed Friending activity was a new event that she had never really seen before on campus.

Attendee Holt Bitler ’21 decided to attend the event because he enjoys meeting new people. Bitler added how Habitat for Humanity chose an ideal time to host the event, which took place at 7:30 p.m. Friday, as he and many others were able to find the time to participate.

“It’s early in the night, there’s not much else to do than kind of hanging around in my dorm. I think it’s really great that this happened at such a convenient time,” said Bitler.

Many participants attended Speed Friending because they had never been exposed to this type of event. One of these attendees was Gayatri Rajan ’22, who wanted to experience something new and different.

“I’ve always wanted to try this concept to ‘speed’ anything, and it seems really fun to do this ‘speed friending’ because, of course, I want to meet new people that I wouldn’t meet otherwise,” said Rajan.

According to Bitler, his favorite memory of the Speed Friending event was when another student asked a question to him. He and the other participants at his table had joked about each others’ responses.

“My favorite part was the question asking us what our new name would be… I said ‘Chuck’ because, I don’t know, I just love the name Chuck,” said Bitler.