Extracurricular Activities in College
University life involves much more than simply attending class. The University as an educational space allows access to hundreds of training opportunities within the classroom, but also outside it. In the corridors, in other rooms of the same University and even outside it.
Did you ever check the University bulletin board? Do you know the extracurricular programs they have? With these activities, you can meet new people, do something you like and at the same time train yourself.
Yes, train yourself because you don’t need a classroom to learn everything.
What are extracurricular activities?
The extracurricular activities allow those students to develop their passions or skills through a commitment to an activity, teamwork or learning a certain skill. As their name says, these are not part of the curriculum or the course program, and therefore do not add credits or class hours, although in some cases they can.
Each University has its activities that it offers as extracurricular to its students. Some of the most traditional are:
Learning languages are so important that it deserves a separate section in the curriculum, but that does not mean that languages are part of the work experience or the academic career: they are still extracurricular activities.
Speaking more than one language is an indicator of more abilities than it seems: it shows mental flexibility.
Therefore, even if the workplace does not ask for languages, putting what languages you speak is not usually excessive. Of course, if you speak seven languages, the ideal is that you only put the three most important ones you speak.
Practising a sport is a very positive extracurricular activity since at least it shows one thing: that you are in good physical shape. Beyond that, there are two different options.
Here you can see all the values that practising sport can give you and, therefore, why to include it in extracurricular activities:
Why include sports in extracurricular activities
As a player
The skills and abilities that show you play sports can vary depending on whether it is a team sport or not. If it is a solitary sport, like tennis, you show that you can make decisions under pressure and tiredness; while if it is a team sport, like soccer, you show that you can work as a team fulfilling a function to achieve a common goal.
As a coach or trainer
If, on the contrary, your experience with the sport is that of a coach, you demonstrate skills in strategy and coordination of people. Qualities highly prized in management or organization positions.
Volunteering is a good asset in the curricula since, for practical purposes, it is work experience, although it is better to include it in extracurricular activities. Altruism and social commitment are the main qualities that this activity demonstrates.
Although including your volunteering experience in the resume has more effect, it is better that you do not specify this. Put other skills you have learned from volunteering, the specific activity you did to help those who need it most.
Organizational (student) committees
You can also include any student organization you have participated in. They are a good activity to demonstrate your concern, your ambitions and that you like to take the initiative.
Finally, collaborations with blogs or any other organizations are strange activities to this catalogue. Although they are not rewarded, they could be considered work experience or could be extracurricular activities.
We believe that it is in your hands to decide where to include them, but the best thing is that if the job you are looking for is directly related to that collaboration, they could be included as work experience. On the other hand, if it is only relevant for the skills that demonstrate that you have, it is best to be in the extracurricular activities section.
What are the benefits of extracurricular activities?
1. They help conciliation process
On many occasions, one of the main reasons for students to attend an after-school activity is the parents’ working hours. For some parents, it is impossible to get to school earlier to pick up the children, and the duration of the extracurricular periods is an extension to be able to arrive on time.
2. Complement the training
These types of activities can be classified into two types. Thus, on the one hand, some activities are related to the subjects taught at the centre (support classes, languages, etc). On the other hand, some activities develop disciplines that are not covered during school hours (performing arts, competitive sports). In both cases, extracurricular activities will complement the student’s training.
3. They release energy
There is nothing better after a day full of classes and academic obligations that you have space and a time in which to “spend” energy playing and enjoying with your peers. This will help you get home more relaxed and clearer.
4. They promote socialization and promote teamwork
Being a more informal space, extracurricular activities are perfect for working on student’s socialization, thus helping to build good personal and social self-esteem. Likewise, values such as respect and tolerance, which many times in schools cannot be worked on as thoroughly as would be desirable, find in extracurricular sports or artistic activities carried out as a team a way to achieve it.
5. They stimulate learning
There is no one way to learn, neither the content nor the values. So it is very interesting that students learn from different teachers and monitors so that s/he integrates the knowledge and not the way to do it.
6. They provide psycho-emotional health
Another importance of extracurricular activities is their benefit for mental well-being. According to different studies carried out, practising sports or carrying out more activities outside the curriculum reduces peer problems, improves hyperactivity or emotional development, positively impacting school performance.
7. They are an alternative to harmful leisure
The way cities are designed currently, students in large populations think of leisure through video games or in front of the television. After-school activities offer a healthier and more complete alternative to some of these harmful leisure practices.
8. They save time
Being able to do activities at school is a way to save time. In this way, there is no obligation to go to an academy or sports centre. Normally, a lot of institutions promote these types of activities for students to use time consciously and productively.
Following from the above discussion, it is safe to say that extracurricular activities are very important for students’ development. They are not ways to burn out energies and catch fun alone; they are activities that can improve mental well-being.
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