The transition from high school to college brings lots of big changes. For the first time, you’re truly on your own, getting your first taste of real independence. You’re leaving behind your close-knit high school community where you likely knew most of—if not all of—your classmates, and moving on to a strange, unfamiliar place with thousands of new people to meet. It can be overwhelming, and leave you feeling a little lost. But joining on-campus clubs and organizations for the things you love to do, the parts of you that you’ll never lose no matter where you go, can change all that. Of course, you’ll want to put your academics and career goals first, and devote your time to achieving them—but encouragement from your RAs and orientation leaders to get involved in campus activities isn’t something you should just brush off. Here’s why:
1. You meet like-minded people you can connect with.
Whatever you’re passionate about—whether it’s dance, gaming, saving the planet or helping others—it’s always great to meet people who feel just as strongly about it. And bonding with other members of the club over your shared interests can lead to amazing friendships!
2. Your campus starts to feel more like home,And your fellow members start to feel like an extended family (and probably one in which you aren’t bombarded with questions about your life choices).
3. You gain a sense of purpose.
You’ve got a place to go other than your dorm and your classes. A place where you’re seen as an asset, an integral part of a whole—where your talents, skills, ideas and opinions can shine.
4. You increase your chances of earning scholarships and awards.
This is probably something you’ve been hearing since middle school, but now that you’re here, living this harsh, expensive reality that is college, you know the true significance of receiving extra funding for your education—and the committees offering that funding want to give it to students who prove themselves to be enthusiastic and ambitious!
5. Your physical, mental and spiritual health improves.
Every minute you spend at club meetings and events is a minute you’re not spending idly holed up in your room, and while that’s sometimes perfectly okay or even necessary to do, too much of it can definitely be unhealthy. You’ll be getting so much more out of your college experience when you venture out and explore all the opportunities your campus has to offer! Not to mention, those meetings and events can be cures for bad days, escapes from the stress of classes, and things to look forward to.