Hip to Be Square
With the popularity of comic-book movies such as The Avengers and the hit TV show The Big Bang Theory, it seems “the nerds” truly are having their revenge. In response to the pop-culture phenomenon, a Susquehanna student conceived Nerd Nation, demonstrating that, at Susquehanna, it’s cool to be a nerd.
“Normal people are nerds; everyone has a nerd inside them,” says Daniel Mack ’14, the communications–public relations major who founded Nerd Nation.
Nerd Nation is composed of the four student-run clubs on campus that some might find, well, nerdy—Anime and Manga Association, Comic Book Club, Table Top Gaming Club and Magic: The Gathering Club. Mack also hopes to revive the Video Gaming Club and add it to the nation.
The Anime and Manga Association discusses Japanese animated shows and graphic novels that have slowly crept into American pop culture. The Comic Book Club explores the realm of comic books, from DC and Marvel comics to films inspired by the genre. Table Top Gaming Club is for people who enjoy playing games that involve teams and sometimes role playing, such as Dungeons and Dragons. Magic: The Gathering Club is for fans of this trading-card game, similar to Dungeons and Dragons but marketed to college students.
Mack estimates that, when fully implemented, Nerd Nation will have about 120 members, making it one of the largest non–Greek Life organizations on campus.
The notion of Nerd Nation at Susquehanna emerged last year, with both “Geek Life” and “Nerd Life” considered as possible names. Mack developed the idea in response to increasing competition among clubs for funding and members.
“We are competing against each other for money and members, but we are all part of the same culture,” Mack says.
Although they will share the same budget, the clubs will continue to operate independently. Each club will hold its own events and have its own executive board that will work with the other Nerd Nation club boards on budgetary matters. The goal is to unite the clubs without forcing members to participate in all of them, Mack says.