Tips from a college student: Get involved

What is the most important part of college?

The most important part of college is getting involved. My first year of college was all about being exposed to new things. It was vital to my college experience to take advantage of any opportunities that would help me learn something or meet new people.

My school has a huge involvement fair during the first week of school where hundreds of student organizations set up tables on the campus green space. Most tables included an email sign-up sheet where you could sign up to learn more about membership or upcoming meetings. Going to this fair was not only a lot of fun, but also a chance to see everything my school had to offer. Plus, I got a lot of free stuff – pens, candy, cups, t-shirts, bags, and even a plant!  I put my email down for everything I felt I was even remotely interested in. Yoga Club? Sure. Mock trial? Done. Student radio? Why not?

After a couple of weeks of continuous emails I was finally able to determine which clubs/groups I was and was not interested in being a part of. For example, I put my name on the Quidditch Team list, but then received the first email and learned there were tryouts to even make the team, and then if you did make it, they travelled for games. I figured playing Quidditch was a fun idea, but it wasn’t for me. However, I did found a lot of organizations that really fit my goals and interests.

Which clubs did you join?

I joined a group called Humanities Scholars, which consisted of similarly minded people whom I could truly feel comfortable around. The Humanities Scholars group both went to and hosted Humanities themed events. Some of my favorite events included a show by my school’s improv group and a talk about gender roles in the media. Humanities Scholars not only exposed me to amazing guest speakers and events, but it also allowed me to meet some awesome people.

I also joined a group called Project Nicaragua, where I learned about and helped raise funds for an elementary school in Nicaragua. I had a ton of fun at these meetings and socials. The Project Nicaragua group goes on an annual trip to Nicaragua to see the school and get an understanding of the extreme poverty the elementary students face each day. I didn’t go last year, but I hope to go this year!

My favorite club I joined was Partnering Up For Pets, which organizes trips to the local animal shelter to help with dog walking/care. You just sign up whenever you have time and can go to the animal shelter for some quality puppy time. I usually signed up to go when I was stressed or particularly missed my dogs from home. The dogs at the shelter were always excited to see you, and I loved being able to make a small difference while still having fun.

Why should college students join clubs?

I would recommend joining clubs because it allows you to meet people with similar interests, and explore your own interests. Colleges have so much to offer, and it’s up to you to learn exactly what that is. By getting involved I was able to get out of my dorm, learn more about campus, and meet great new people I never would have otherwise!


Caroline PicAbout the author: Caroline Kinnen is a 19-year-old full-time undergrad student at Ohio State University. She is double majoring in Communications Analysis and Practice and Political Science.




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