Advisers of clubs, organizations and associations at Dixie State University have a goal to encourage students to be more involved on campus.
DSU has a variety of opportunities which students can involve themselves in, and faculty want them to know there are ways to be involved in school beyond going to class and social events, that can make it easier for them to transition to a new place and get comfortable at an establishment the majority will spend four or more years at.
“[Being involved] is really caring about your environment and where you’re at,” Amber Denning, international student life coordinator, said. “Here on campus, being involved is joining clubs, finding events you can help with, volunteering.”
Denning said there are two types of students: those who are new to school and are ready to jump in and get involved and those who are scared and intimidated at first because they don’t know how easy getting involved can be.
“Sometimes it’s getting out of your comfort zone and it can be uncomfortable, but overall it’s helping and getting to know other people,” Denning said.
Being involved has more than a social aspect. It can also be something which can help students gain experience which can be used in their careers.
Allison McMullin, international student adviser said at a conference she went to, she was told that anyone can earn a bachelor’s, but a degree can’t teach students to have a good attitude, good customer service skills, or go beyond just doing a job.
“Having our students being involved on campus — or off campus — with different activities like service, or volunteering or anything like it, just creates that global engagement that we need,” McMullin said.
There are a lot of ways for students to be involved on campus beyond their education. From senate and clubs to activities, events, research opportunities and social media Luke Kerouac, director of student involvement and leadership said.
Kerouac said there is a lot of research on the subject of how getting involved with clubs, activities and organizations can benefit students.
“Most of them agree that the more a student is involved, although contrary to popular belief, the better their grades are,” Kerouac said.
The worry with students is that they are too busy with class, work or their social lives so they cannot be involved, or their grades will suffer, but that is not the truth, Kerouac said.
According to a research paper written by Amy L. Hawkins at Purdue University titled “Relationship between Undergraduate Student Activity and Academic Performance” students who were involved in an organization achieved a GPA of 3.0 more consistently than general students.
“The more students are involved, the better they do in school. Not only the better they do in school, but the more they enjoy it,” Kerouac said. “The enjoyment factor as a whole in their college experience goes up. Because if you join a team or a club, or an organization, then you’ve got friends.”
According to an article by U.S. News called “5 Reasons for Getting Involved in College—And How to Go About It” student involvement allows students to be connected to their school, it helps them build community and it allows them to discover their passions and strengths. It also helps students build their resume.
At the beginning of each semester, club rush gives students the opportunity to join a club or organization that interests them.
Getting involved in a club or organization does not need to be only during club rush. It can be done at any time and any day of the year, although not much happens in the summer months Kerouac said.
Students who want to be more involved and gain experiences beyond their major can do so by joining a club, organization, sports team, or reaching out to the community. For a list of clubs and organizations at DSU, they can access orgsync.com on the DSU website and go to clubs and organizations under the Dixie Life header.