Starting a Running Club on Campus

I have always had a passion for new ideas and helping the community. This is why I chose Bryn Mawr, a place where we are constantly encouraged to seek solutions for problems in our community.

I have always also had a passion for running. Creating community and running don’t seem to go too well hand in hand. In fact, most people know running as an individual sport. I want to challenge that idea.

I have been playing field hockey for the past 20 years of my life, I am now 22 and entering my final year of undergrad. In these exciting times, I have been trying to create a lasting legacy of community-building work,  whether that be academically or through social efforts, like the founding of the Laid Back Runners Club alongside my dear friend Sophie Khanna ’22.

Sophie and I met one afternoon in History class. We didn’t know each other, and the first thing I noticed about her was that she was wearing the running shoes that were currently on my running attire wishlist. COVID happened and our class turned remote. We became remote friends, through Instagram DMs. You know how it is these days…

Between messaging we discovered we both loved running. A year and a half later, we decided to create the Bryn Mawr LBRC and we are now going through the process of recruiting members and receiving the stamp of approval.

In order to create the club, we filled out a form sent out by BMC Student Activities a month or so before the start of the fall semester. We had to have five interested members and a club mission/constitution. After that, we requested a table from BMC Student Activities, so we could set up at Fall Frolic, which is an annual event where all student clubs present themselves to the student body and people can learn more about the club and sign up! 

After Fall Frolic and when your club has interested members, you can begin arranging meetings, events, etc. We are now in the process of organizing our running schedules for the club and meetings. Once that is done, we want to switch our focus to building a more formal constitution and budget proposal for the club to be considered for funding by the SGA. 

How Sophie and I connected with our passion for running shows us that running is not an individual sport, it fosters community. Sophie and I wanted to share our love and reach those members of the BMC community who love running, those who think they love it, those who love it but are afraid to run with a big group, those who think they are too slow, and most importantly, those who hate it (in order to hopefully, change their mind).

There are no time goals, no prizes, no mile times needed to be a part of our club. This story is not even an advertisement for the club itself, it is to show you how passionate Bryn Mawr students are about creating small but meaningful changes in their communities. For me, creating a lasting and positive legacy is about many things, and one of those is by running and bringing people with me for every mile of this journey. To make people healthier, happier – and definitely sweatier!

Running the back roads of Bryn Mawr’s campus – BMC is an ideal running route: lots of greenery, hills and beautiful houses!