Chess Mates: Inside the Dynamic World of KLU's Chess Club


It would be difficult to find two people more involved in KLU student clubs than Nima Nami and Laurids Nittka. In charge of the Social Events Committee and advisupply respectively, the two Bachelor of Business Administration students also organize small, informal chess events at KLU. Soon to graduate, they say the potential to establish a chess club at the university exists, it just needs the right people to do it.

How did you come up with the idea for a chess club?

Laurids: We both play chess, but at a relatively amateur level of course and our friend group thought it would be cool to have a small tournament, just the four of us. Then we thought why don't we scale this up and make it a whole university thing? Because if we like chess, surely other people like it too.

Nima: Recently there's just been a lot of interest in chess on the internet and we had this really cool idea of how we could actually do a professors versus students first tournament and get the whole community together. Unfortunately, almost none of the professors knew how to play or were not good enough to really make it a tournament so it ended up just being students.

What are your plans for establishing it properly?

Nima: Laurids and I both graduate in June, so in a way it would really depend on if there's still someone interested in carrying on the club or the events for the chess club, because there's no point of establishing it if no one wants to take over. We could establish it as soon as possible if people want to play.

Laurids: It’s also a small issue that the spring semesters are usually quite empty because fourth semester bachelors are abroad and the graduating masters and bachelors are focusing on their theses. So, people probably don’t have that much time as compared to the winter semester. We might have trouble finding enough people for regular events because I think a one-time tournament is fine, but weekly meetings are just another thing to put on people's schedules.

That’s why, for now, chess is probably going to stay as an element of the event committee but not become an official club. Long-term we would really like to see it develop, but, of course, that depends on who takes it over.

If we have people in the first semesters now who really are into chess and want to pursue this idea, then it would be really cool to see it. But, right now, I think it's realistic that at least for this semester chess stays under the umbrella of the events committee.

Why should people get involved with the chess club?

Nima: It’s something that, as a student, you probably don't have to get too involved in. Let's say if we meet once a week to just play chess and if I normally play chess, why wouldn't I join? It’s like a hobby or an activity I enjoy. We also allow alumni to participate in the events which is nice as it further builds the KLU community and allows for students to meet past students.