Everything You Need to Know About Extracurriculars
More often than not, students get very worked up about their marks when it comes to post-secondary admissions. Often, they take specialized programs like AP or IB courses (myself included) and hold the quality of their work in their last two year of highschool to a very high degree. While this is very important, there are other equally significant aspects to keep in mind during the application process. Continuing the “How-To: University Applications” series, this post will outline some advice on extracurricular involvement in terms of post-secondary applications.
Weight of Extracurricular Activities
Extracurricular involvement can be supplemental to your university applications, however, there is a right way and a wrong way to do it. Your record of extracurricular experience should ideally demonstrate multiple things.
1. Your engagement in your community beyond the classroom. Universities want to admit students who will take advantage of their resources and contribute to their community as a whole.
2. You should take leadership positions when they are available, and invest your energy into the things you do. You don’t have to be the CEO of your own startup to impress people who read your applications, but if you take time to pursue meaningful opportunities instead of many more miniscule ones, the positive impact on not only the admissions officers, but on people around you.
3. Do things you love and appreciate. The joy you take in things that truly matter to you rather than a resume padded with a long list of activities will strengthen your candidacy.
Types of Extracurricular Activities
Diversity in extracurriculars is a vital part of your applications. Showing that you are a well-rounded individual with a wide range of capabilities can strengthen any supplemental application. While it is important to keep this in mind, make sure that you are also doing things you love! Diversity is important, but if you’re signing up for the volleyball team when you can’t stand group sports, you’re going to hate going to that club, and in turn, have poor commitment, which will lead to bad reviews. If you’re doing something just so it will ‘look good on your applications’, you may want to reconsider. Also, universities know what types of clubs are significant and require involvement, compared to smaller clubs that don’t have much impact.
All in all, doing things you love while also contributing to your community are the key things to keep in mind while choosing extracurriculars for your applications. Like we’ve said before, cherish these four years while you’re living them -- they fly by quickly.