Extracurriculars: A Great Way To Explore Interests

It’s no doubt that college is expensive in every aspect possible.

And although many students come to college with a major already picked out, there are still a ton of students who are undecided and hope that taking an array of classes will help them eventually decide on a major. But with tuition costs rising more year after year, enrolling in extra elective classes isn’t always cost-efficient.

So what’s a good way to learn more about certain interests without paying an arm and a leg for a class? Extracurricular activities, organizations and clubs!

Perhaps you’re interested in film and movies but don’t want to spend all that money on one film theory class–then join a film club! You’ll get the benefits of learning, discussing, hands-on experience and meeting people with the same interest. It’s everything you would have gotten from class except a little less in depth, cheaper (a lot of groups are free to join!), and you won’t have to be tested on any material.

This is no different than if you wanted to try a new sport but didn’t want to pay for an instructional class. Clubs and organizations are there for students to seek out new activities, which could open your eyes to a skill or hobby you never knew you possessed.

There’s an excuse heard time and time again about why so many students don’t get involved with extracurriculars:

“I don’t have time…”

As a full-time student with an internship, as well as working at a restaurant and for a magazine, I know the time management challenges students face daily. Saying you don’t have any time is usually just a lazy excuse.

My freshman year I took the bare minimum amount of classes and didn’t get involved in anything extracurricular. Same goes for my sophomore year, and my grades both years were mediocre. My third year, though, I realized I was interested in things outside of my major so I started getting involved. I packed on the extracurriculars which in turn lead to networking, tons of new friends and a major improvement in my grades.

My grades weren’t good the first two years because I didn’t have to manage my time–I had all the time in the world to be lazy and that laziness showed in my work ethic too. It wasn’t until I had to break down my time literally hour by hour when I realized I couldn’t slack anymore. And while I admit I am more stressed at times, trying something new has made me happier and lead to adding a specialization onto my major!

The benefits don’t stop there. Think about how you’re always being told that colleges seek out diverse students that like to be involved. Well, the same applies for potential employers. A resume will either make or break you, and it’s best to have a wide variety of activities and interests that show how active you are.

Employers seek people that specialize in something, but also someone with the full package and can pick-up quickly on many different things. Getting involved in activities not necessarily directed towards your major isn’t a waste a time! These various skills will come in handy when you least expect it.

Joining a club or organization to explore curiosities looks good on a resume, saves money, leads to new friends, and isn’t a huge time commitment. As young adults we’re constantly learning new things from parents, peers, school, jobs and extra activities. So what’s it going to hurt to expand our minds a little more?

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Jordyn Timpson

Jordyn Timpson

Jordyn Timpson is a junior at Michigan State University working towards her journalism degree with a specialization in documentary film. She designs and writes for a campus magazine and is a server at Bob Evans. When Jordyn has free time she likes to watch movies and her favorite show Breaking Bad, spend hours on tumblr, go on adventures with friends and travel.
Jordyn Timpson

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