Extracurricular Guide 101

Welcome to your second year of high school! It’s a brand new school year and a fresh new start– if there’s anything you wished you had done last year, you still have time to try it out this year!

One thing to remember is to not be afraid to continue exploring. It can take a while to discover and choose which extracurriculars you enjoy the most. However, try not to spread yourself too thin on too many different activities. Overcommitting means you won’t be able to make the most out of each of them.

My school always holds a two-day fair in the first month of school to showcase all our wonderful clubs!

Additionally, sophomore year is when you can start taking your passions in extracurriculars even further. I’ve listed some ways to do so below:

Clubs

  • Narrow down the focus 
    • Try to center them around something you would like to pursue as a career
  • Get more involved in your club
    • Consistent attendance at meetings shows your commitment 
    • Pursue a leadership position
  • Start a club if your school doesn’t have one you’re really interested in

Sports

  • Keep yourself active and in shape
  • Participate in an out-of-school or travelling team
  • Maintain good relationships with your coaches and upperclassmen
    • College recruitment for sports often comes through coaches
    • Older players may be able to impart useful advice
  • Keep your grades up
    • You may not be allowed to continue playing a sport at school if your grades drop
  • Take advantage of academic support programs for athletes
    • Alternatively, ask friends or hire a tutor for help with schoolwork 
  • Aim for a captain position on your team
    • This shows colleges that you also have the values and qualities of a leader

Volunteering

  • Find a location where you can consistently volunteer long term to demonstrate commitment
    • An example would be every Saturday at a local soup kitchen or food bank
  • Find an initiative meaningful to you
  • Create your own team of volunteers for a cause 

Other

  • Examples: part-time job or research in a lab
    • Reflects things important to you
    • Provides unique experiences that you learn from

At the end of the day, extracurriculars should be things that you enjoy doing. Although they do contribute to your college applications, participating in them should be something you do for yourself and NOT for your resume. The more genuinely passionate you are for an extracurricular, the more it will show in your performance in them, which will aid your personal growth and make you shine as an individual.

Emily