10 Ways to Get Involved in Student Campus Life
Jul 20, 2011
Participating in student organizations and campus events can be a great way to get to know your school, make friends, build a professional network and have some fun along the way. Read on to discover 10 ways you can get involved with campus life.
1. Join or Start a Club
Most colleges and universities have countless student-run campus clubs. These typically include interest-based groups (from cooking to comics), activity-based groups (hiking or dancing, anyone?), social and political groups (such as a women's or multicultural center) and much more. Check with your student services center to learn more about joining existing student organizations.
Have a passion that you don't see represented? It can be fun to start your own group as long as you have the time and energy for it. Student services can also help you with this process.
2. Participate in Student Government
Not only can joining student government help you meet more people and get involved with important campus matters, it's great for your resume. You'll gain leadership skills, make connections with a diverse body of students and be able to demonstrate that you participated in a central decision-making activity.
3. Join the School Paper
One of the most valuable skills you'll gain in college is writing. No matter your major or your future career, the ability to write will always put you one step ahead of the game. Sharpen these skills while delving into the nuts and bolts of campus life by joining the student newspaper. There are likely to be opportunities for article writers, proofreaders (also known as copy editors), researchers and lead editors. Tip: Writing for the student newspaper is another great item to have on your resume.
Do you excel in one particular area, such as writing or math? Consider offering your services to your college's tutoring centers. Many institutions actually hire students to tutor, or you can work for a volunteer tutoring organization that will match you with students who need help. This can be a good way to meet people outside of your major while gaining the satisfaction of helping other students.
5. Get Involved in Sports
Even if you're not a varsity-level athlete, many schools have lots of team sports opportunities for 'regular' students. Look for non-traditional games such as ultimate Frisbee or join a regular student pick-up game.
Students who don't like to play can still get involved in sports by cheering teams on. This is a particularly important school spirit activity at large universities, where everything from tailgate parties to the games themselves offer countless opportunities for celebrating your school and having fun.
6. Join a Sorority or Fraternity
Many large colleges and universities offer 'Greek life,' or sororities and fraternities. Getting into these organizations can be competitive, but they provide a lifelong network of social support and professional connections. Many Greek organizations also encourage members to get involved in volunteering, philanthropy and a variety of campus-based activities.
More and more colleges are integrating volunteering and service learning directly into the curriculum. If you aren't taking any service learning courses, consider looking for campus-based volunteer organizations that can help you give back to your community alongside your peers. Options may range from tutoring local children to helping build homes or clean up neighborhood streets.
8. Attend Campus Events
Many colleges and universities host frequent campus events, including lectures, music, theater performances, movie screenings and more. These are typically free for students and offer a chance to meet new people who may share a surprising interest with you.
9. Share Your Cause
Are you passionate about a specific political organization or social cause? College campuses have long been important political centers and sharing your beliefs can be a good way to connect with other students and maybe even change a few minds. Options range from running a weekly meeting to setting up a booth at a student fair to staging peaceful protests on campus.
10. Visit Another College
Interested in branching out beyond your institution? Many schools offer student exchange and study abroad programs that give you the opportunity to study at another college or university. This can expose you to the culture on another campus, or even in another country, and help you make new friends all over the world.