Jilliian McGahan Staff Writer
College is both an exciting and terrifying time in our lives. We don’t know what to expect, we only hope that we will somehow make it. It’s a trial and an adventure. So, why not make the best of it?
There is so much more to college than just academics. It’s about the college experience. Along with attending classes, there are various clubs and events on campus. In essence, clubs and events are designed to foster unity amongst students through participation in meaningful activities, which advance its central purpose.
Students get involved in clubs because it provides them with entertainment and enjoyment. Clubs also contribute to the social element of college life. Participating in student organizations and campus events can be a great way to get to know your school, make friends, build a professional network, while having some fun along the way.
Clubs play an integral role in the college experience. A wide and diversified range of clubs exist on college campuses, meeting a variety of student interests. Involvement in a club positively affects student learning by gaining and improving skills, and impacts students’ emotional, intellectual, social, personal and interpersonal development.
In addition, club involvement will influence students’ academic development. A student’s peer group is the most important source of influence for a student on an academically and personal level. By identifying, with a peer group, they may influence a student’s affective and cognitive development as well as his or her behavior. In other words, clubs will motivate and push you to be the best person and student you can be.
“By working together with other individuals, students learn to negotiate, communicate, manage conflict, and lead others… helps students to understand the importance of critical thinking skills, time management, and academic and intellectual competence… helps students mature socially by providing a setting for student interaction, relationship formation, and discussion… allows for students to gain more self-confidence, autonomy, and appreciation for others’ differences and similarities.”
Furthermore, students develop skills specific to their career path and imperative for future job success. Through clubs, opportunities to improve students’ leadership and interpersonal skills are provided while also increasing their self-confidence. Being involved in a club allows students to combine their academic knowledge with practical experience by taking what you learned in class and putting it to use. Thus, leading students to a better understanding of their own abilities, talents, and career goals.
Clubs focus on building and sustaining a community on campus as well as student retention. Colleges may become more diverse year after year, leading the students to desire an environment that creates a sense of connection between them and others, and the university. The clubs on campus provide a place for students to come together, discuss ideas and issues, share information, accomplish common goals, and of course, have some fun.
Ranging from primarily social organizations to governance organizations to intercollegiate athletic programs, there are multiple clubs that students can join depending on their interest. After all, clubs are something you are meant to enjoy and learn from. However, you’re not just limited to clubs. You could participate in student government, join the school paper, become a tutor or teaching assistant, get involved in intramural sports, join a sorority or fraternity, do community service and volunteering, get a job on campus, study abroad, attend campus events, join or start a club; what’s important is to get involved!