Opinion | Invest time in clubs and organizations

Students should find the time to actively participate in clubs and organizations despite their busy schedules.


Daniel McGregor-Huyer

Students gather in the Main Ballroom at the Iowa Memorial Union for the Student Involvement fair on Jan. 26 2022.

Kyle Tristan Ortega, Opinions Contributor

I sleep for eight hours, go to school for four, work for four, and do homework for two. That is 18 hours of my day laid out for me.

Students usually have a lot on their plate. From homework to jobs, there are a lot of things that could keep us busy. However, students should still find the time to do things we are passionate about or interested in, regardless of our academic and professional responsibilities.

Despite time constraints, students should join and actively participate in a club or organization during college.

But why should we? The time we spend with a club or organization could be time we spend on school requirements or work, which intuitively would be a more fruitful endeavor. Additionally, having extracurricular commitments could make it more difficult for us to balance other aspects of our college life.

Put simply, we should do so because it will not only give us something fun to do with like-minded people, but it will also offer us opportunities for more holistic development.

A study researching the effects of club and organization involvement on the psychosocial development of college students found several significant differences between students who involved themselves in clubs and organizations and students who did not.

Namely, students who are involved on campus were reported to be more developed in the areas of establishing and clarifying purpose, educational involvement, career planning, life management, and cultural participation.

Students can improve various aspects of our skill sets and competencies by participating in clubs and organizations, which is beneficial for multiple facets of student life. This supports the idea that we should find the time for them, even with a busy schedule.

What if a student is more career-oriented? Are there any benefits that can help with this? In addition to personal development, a study regarding student involvement suggests that joining clubs and organizations can further one’s professional career as well.

According to its results, highly-involved students are three times more likely to be considered for jobs by employers compared to uninvolved students. Even if one were only moderately involved, they would still be two times more likely to be considered for a position.

Regardless, the most important thing clubs and organizations offer is a sense of community as it is a place where people can gather and work with like-minded individuals. A study on the relationship between community belongingness and health shows that having a sense of belonging within a community is one of the most important determinants of health.

Specifically, a weaker sense of community belonging was associated with poorer general and mental health, while a stronger sense of community belonging was associated with the opposite.

If you are not interested in the benefits club and organization involvement can provide, they will at least allow you to meet like-minded individuals who can help you develop a stronger sense of belonging, which will certainly have a positive impact on your health.

I am a philosophy major, and I love to write. That is why I joined The Daily Iowan as an opinions contributor. Though I have to set aside hours of my week to write, hours I could spend doing something else, writing for the DI is something I enjoy. So, I do it, and I feel that I am better off for it.

They are sometimes only seen as fun things to do during your free time, but they offer much more benefits than just enjoyment. These benefits make them well worth anyone’s time.