The importance of getting involved
by Ian Gebhart
Getting involved in activities can be one of the most rewarding parts of your university experience. I always had a good time during my first two years as a student here, but I didn’t really get involved in much until the summer after my second year. I started working as a tour guide for Chestnut that summer and then became Urban Crew Manager during the school year. I was genuinely surprised by how much more I enjoyed myself after I started doing more in the school community.
For starters, it has allowed me to meet tons of new people. Giving tours, working in Urban Lounge, and working with other student leaders have all given me the chance to befriend a lot of people, many of whom I may not have even otherwise met. And since I was regularly running events and attending meetings during the school year, I also found myself becoming much more confident in terms of leading and public speaking. The idea of taking charge and leading became far less intimidating as I found my voice and discovered my strengths.
In addition to the social aspect of it all, adding to your co-curricular record is definitely a boost to any resume, job application, or grad school application. Even something as seemingly small as volunteering for a few hours a week will make your resume more memorable and enticing.
Once you’re settled in and feel comfortable with the idea of taking on a role in the community, I definitely recommend doing so. It’s had an enormously positive impact on my life and I can’t wait to keep going. You don’t have to do exactly what I did, though. Find a way to get involved that feels right for you. Go at your own speed and in your own direction. And once you start, I bet you’ll only wish that you had gotten involved sooner than you did.