When you hear the words “extracurricular activities,” you may be inclined to imagine a football field filled with athletes or a humid classroom filled with the math club. You're not wrong, but you're not entirely right either. Extracurriculars encompass so much more than just sports and clubs - though that's what they really are.
This article will educate you on why extracurriculars are so important - and how they can help you after you graduate.
We go to school to receive an education, but that doesn't have to be all
that we get out of the experience. Part of the high school experience is trying new things and meeting new people - not just staying at home and finishing up that history essay. That's why extracurricular activities are so important. Some people may think they're a waste of time or that there's nothing that interests them.
While those are valid arguments, there wouldn't be those football players or math clubbers running around the school if they weren't enjoying what they were doing, or if it wasn't beneficial to them. Extracurricular activities are no waste of time - in fact; they're a great use of time. You earn invaluable experience and memories with individuals who have similar interests as you.
And there are so many out there, there's bound to be one that interests you. I've even heard of a club where members just sit, eat donuts and drink soda, but I'm not sure how far that will go!
Like anime? Join the anime club. Have an interest in drawing? The drawing club meets every Monday after school. Want to become a doctor? HOSA (HOSA-Future Health Professionals, formerly known as Health Occupations Students of America) is just for you. Want to start your own business? FBLA (Future Business Leaders of America) is right down the hall. Want to give back to the community? Go check out Key Club. There are so many different types of clubs and organizations out there, and they'd all like for you to join. Don't get extracurriculars mixed up with after school clubs, though. Extracurriculars encompass clubs and sports, because they are the activities done outside of class.
So why are these activities so important? Besides from giving you experience at what you're interested in and introducing you to other like-minded individuals, extracurriculars will do wonders to your college application. C-college application?
You may be thinking. But, I'm only a freshman!
That's even better! Colleges love to see that you're dedicated to an activity by staying with it throughout your entire high school career. In fact, that's better than jumping from club to club all the time. It's a good idea to try out the ones you're interested in at the beginning of the school year and stick with the ones you truly enjoy for the rest of the year.
Many colleges follow what is called a holistic admissions process. That means, when they receive an application from a student, they look at everything as a whole. This is good because if you got a B sophomore year in chemistry, they won't judge your entire being on just that grade. This is bad because if you have a 4.0 but stayed in your room your entire four years and did nothing else, they may not consider you a good candidate for their college.
In a nutshell, colleges look at your grades and other activities you've done throughout high school and base their admittance decision on that. Typically what colleges nowadays focus on are those extracurriculars. That's why it's so important to choose a few activities you really enjoy and stick with them, because colleges will see your dedication and take that into consideration. If a college can see that you can balance your academics as well as out of school activities, they will certainly want you on their campus.
So, extracurriculars help you get into college. That's not the only thing they help you with though. I recently had an interview for an online writing internship. What surprised me the most about the questions they asked me was that none of them were about my grades or academic history. Instead, they asked about past experiences I'd had. Jobs and internships, just like colleges, do care about your standings as far as grades though but they also look for individuals with experience. If it's experience similar to the job you're applying for, that's even better! If you want to be a teacher, you can't expect just your great grades to get you the job. Having experience with dealing with kids will be more beneficial to you. Take that into consideration when you apply for jobs, as employers aren't just looking for employees with great grades, but rather great experience. And this experience comes from any extracurriculars.
While your high school may not have Troy Bolton or Zach Morris walking its halls, it does have an abundance of clubs, sports and organizations for you to be a part of. These extracurriculars will not only give you a reason to be excited for after school or great t-shirts or awesome snacks, but it will provide you with invaluable experience that you can't gain from a textbook. You'll meet individuals who share the same passions as you. And, it'll be another great quality to add to your resume, which will be another great quality colleges and employers will love.
Overall, being a part of an extracurricular activity will give you a greater sense of pride. You'll feel proud that you're part of something you enjoy. It's this pride that will be instilled with you forever, as you go out there to conquer the world. Just finish your history essay first.