Okay I’m going to say something which might invoke some arguments among the people but which I firmly believe with my whole heart.
If the only thing you participate in at college is your classes, you are doing it WRONG.
There are very few exceptions to this statement for me. These include if you are working full time outside of college (which you really shouldn’t be, but sometimes you gotta do what you gotta do) or if you’re struggling with your courses AND are dedicating all your free time to improving your grades.
For most of us, college is the most diverse environment we will ever be in, especially community colleges. If, in these years, we don’t seize the chance to participate in the countless clubs, organizations, and societies on campus, we’re never going to get the same opportunity again. I’m not saying you have to be the President of 7 different groups, but the very least we can do is attend student-planned events to show support for the hard work of our many clubs.
Currently I’m President of the Muslim Student Association at Catonsville, and, as you all know, a Student Ambassador. Both positions have honestly help me grow a lot as a person which is why I feel so passionate about helping others experience the same.
Below, I’ve listed every reason I can think of for why you need to get involved on campus, if you aren’t already.
- RESUME BUILDING – Being active in an organization on campus is the best way to demonstrate to potential universities or employers that you’re an above average candidate in your field. CCBC has active clubs for Business, Nursing, Film, and Psychology to name just a few.
- NEW FRIENDS – When you join an organization, it means you’re joining a community of like-minded individuals who meet several times throughout the school year to work together on a voluntary basis. The chances of making new and awesome friends become way higher than if you just attended classes. Also I know a bunch of people who have met their significant others through clubs which is always a plus in my book. BEWARE: Sending off club members when they graduate is one of the saddest things ever.
- UNEXPLORED INTERESTS – If you’re interested in something that you don’t have much experience in, and don’t have the time or money to sign up for a class, the next best thing you can do is join a club. You don’t need to go into an organization already knowledgeable about what they do, you just need to have a passion for it! In my experience, clubs are always hungry for new members and will be more than happy to teach you the basics of what they do.
- PERSONAL SKILLS – While individuals in campus organizations might have the same overall goals, we all have different opinions on how to reach them. As you’re planning big events and discussing new ideas, you’ll pick up communication skills, learn how to compromise, and figure out how to work with diverse personalities and backgrounds.
- COMMUNITY INVOLVEMENT – Just as a general civic duty, we should dedicate some of our free time to improving and strengthening our communities. The most convenient way to do that in college is to lend our strengths to organizations benefitting students, or even establish the safe spaces which many minority groups on campus lack.
- REAL LIFE EXPERIENCE – Especially if you’re having trouble getting an internship in your preferred field, joining an organization can give you a taste of what you’ll be in for if you decide to pursue it.
- NETWORKING – You’ll get the chance to build closer relationships with not only your fellow club members, but your advisors, similar organizations in different universities, and the faculty members who you’ll be in constant contact with while you’re planning events. (Shoutout to Mr. Dan and Ms. Susan in the Student Life Office, I think I see them more than my own parents) Down the road, they’ll also be great references for you.
- FREEBIES – I know y’all are always in it for free stuff. Being involved in clubs gets you free food, free shirts, and free invitations to events that aren’t open to the general student body.
- IT’S JUST AWESOME – To me, there is nothing more satisfying than seeing people benefit from an event I put together with my own hands. I never feel as though I belong as much as when I’m in a room filled with my amazing cabinet of MSA members. It’s a wonderful experience I think everyone deserves to have.
Here’s a link to a list of organizations at CCBC, I really truly do encourage all of you to get involved! Also the Get Involved Fair where all the CCBC Catonsville clubs will have tables for you to check out is this THURSDAY FEBRUARY 9TH 11 AM – 2 PM!!!! GET HIP and good luck!