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Student involvement makes OSU experience worthwhile, benefits students’ futures

While making my way through the Winter Involvement Fair in January with a group of friends who were anxious to become a part of a club this quarter, I could not help but wonder why a student at a university clearly abundant with opportunity would choose not to get involved.

It is without question that academics should be a student’s top priority, as that is the main reason for furthering one’s education.

A smaller, private college, however, is certainly just as sufficient when it involves obtaining a degree.

But being a student at Ohio State is about more than just a GPA; it is about taking advantage of the wide range of opportunities this university has to offer.

OSU is said to have more than 500 different student organizations, with everything from Undergraduate Student Government to the Rubik’s Cube Club. And if there still isn’t a group that caters to one’s interest, students have the ability to create their own group.

Yes, it is understandable that not everyone has a large amount of free time on their hands, but many clubs only meet for an hour or two each week. Some even meet less frequently than that. There is always room for an organization to fit into a busy schedule, unless that time is already occupied by a sport or part-time job.

Joining an organization is the best way to meet students with similar interests. It allows for networking and shows that you are taking pride in your school.

At my freshman orientation and for much of the first quarter, the importance of involvement was drilled into our heads. We couldn’t get away from it.

I was heavily involved throughout my years in high school and knew the day I was accepted into OSU that I wanted to continue that pattern.

I would recommend that anyone who would like to join an organization but doesn’t know where to start attend an involvement fair, held at the beginning of each quarter.

I will admit that between the swarm of people and the large number of booths at the 2011 Autumn Involvement Fair, I was a bit overwhelmed. However, I was able to use my hobbies and interests as a starting place for what organizations to further explore.

It was that event that helped give me some direction, along with the various flyers posted around campus about groups open to new members. In little time, I found a number of groups to join, including the Residence Halls Advisory Council, my hall council, OSU “Her Campus” online magazine and the Society of Professional Journalists. I also entered OSU as part of the Media, Marketing and Communication Scholars Program, for which I decided to serve on the Freshman Executive Board as well.

Since I have immersed myself in a variety of clubs, I understand why involvement is even more valuable than it was in high school.

Although it has been said hundreds of times, being a member of organizations truly makes this huge university feel a whole lot smaller. I rarely ever find myself walking through campus without seeing at least one friendly, familiar face along the way.

That is what develops OSU into its own community.

Becoming involved is not just about staying busy or about having a way to improve your resume. It is what makes the college experience for a Buckeye truly worthwhile.

 

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