Written by: Chelsey Duncan, Marketing Intern
|2011 KWeek Student Center Spectacular|
As the 2011-2012 academic year winds down, many organizations are seeking new members and officers for the upcoming school year. As many first-year students approach sophomore year, this is the ideal time to consider all the ways to get connected to UK’s campus. For underclassmen who are hesitant about getting involved, ask any junior or senior the importance and impact that involvement has made in their college careers. Even for upperclassmen, it is never too late to leave a mark or make a change on campus.
Becoming involved on campus has many more benefits than may be apparent. There’s the typical “resume-building” advantage, which is important in demonstrating the ability to balance academics and involvement in organizations and the community. Potential employers also look highly upon leadership experience, which can stem from joining an organization and advancing from member to officer. Such participation boosts students’ skills and confidence.
Gaining valuable experience outside of the classroom can provide many more rewards, too. Attending various club meetings and trying out different pursuits helps students discover personal interests and strengths that would otherwise remain unknown. This can help students find their niche and can be extremely useful in exploring possible majors and careers.
For freshmen and transfer students, stepping into a new, unfamiliar community can be intimidating. Studies suggest that more engaged students stay at their institution and don’t feel the need to transfer. Joining a club and meeting other students in similar situations is a way to make campus seem smaller. This networking will also be useful in the future, such as senior year and post-graduation when job-hunting.
Although some students fear that being involved might hinder academic performance, it may actually boost grades. Studies have shown that students who are active in campus activities and must manage their time are more engaged in the campus community and actually succeed more academically than students involved less or not at all.
There are many opportunities for students to become involved on UK’s campus. The Center for Student Involvement, located in the Student Center Room 106, is a great place to start. It houses organizations such as the Peer Resource Team and the Center for Community Outreach, among many others. Opportunities to get involved in include:
· Campus Life
· Leisure and Recreation
· Student Media
· Arts and Culture
· Service and Outreach
· and Leadership Development
UK hosts a multitude of organizations that cover a vast array of interests and hobbies. For students cramped by time and money, on-campus jobs can provide a great way to feel connected and to become knowledgeable about campus locations and events. There really is a place for every student to discover and pursue their passions and to grow as an individual. Students can even launch new clubs. Check out getinvolved.uky.edu for more information and get connected today!