Should I Consider Joining a Campus Club?

by Tony Suleiman Jr.

The entirety of the four-year university experience can be boiled down to one philosophy: You get out of college what you put into it. Enjoying the richest and most fruitful time possible in college entails being proactive. Students have numerous resources at their disposal to better connect with campus life and community, such as campus clubs, which are key to making the most of your college experience. Through joining a college club, you can build a healthy and vibrant network of friends and enjoy trying new things.

Take the Plunge

As a senior looking back on the past couple years, I have a deep appreciation for the two clubs I was lucky enough to be part of: APU Men’s Chorale and the Student Investment Fund (SIF). When I first came to APU, I was a textbook introvert. Crazy ideas like joining clubs in college were inconceivable at the time. I was the type to enter a room full of my hallmates and sit in the back corner. Throughout my freshman year, and up until the first semester of my sophomore year when I joined Men’s Chorale, the only people I knew were on my hall.

Beginning my first day participating in Men’s Chorale, one of APU’s performance ensembles, I was no longer relegated to the realms of social isolation. I was thrown into a group with around 75 other guys and taught how to read and sing sacred, religious music—and this is where I found true community and many lifelong friends. Together we performed for congregations in churches, in Chapel, and on tour in places like South Korea, Hawaii, and the Pacific Northwest. One reason this experience has been so amazing is that I almost didn’t do it. I had no choir or singing experience, so it felt like I had no business being in a choir. But, I took the plunge anyway. I decided to try something new and it turned out to be the greatest part of my college experience.

Do What You Love

During my junior year, I joined the Student Investment Fund (SIF). I am one of an anomalous group of people who actually enjoys the subject of finance. I enjoy learning about it, talking about it, practicing it, and really anything related to finance. When I joined that club, I found myself once again in a room of like-minded individuals who felt the same passion for finance that I did. My favorite part of the club wasn’t even the material we worked with but the interactions with our supervising professor, who is a certified financial planner. He taught us tangible, useful knowledge about personal finance and investing, which made the club relevant to our lives.

Something for Everybody

Are choral work and finance not your thing? Have no fear. There is a club for you. APU has around 48 clubs with topics ranging from biology, criminal justice, and robotics, to surfing and club sports. These clubs usually meet once a week and offer an ideal place to cultivate and discuss your interests with other students who enjoy the same things. And don’t hesitate to look outside your current interests to try something new and intriguing. You might find an undiscovered passion or an adventure to remember for the rest of your life.

Staying in your comfort zone could be tempting, but it won’t help you make the most of your college experience. Going out and joining college clubs you’ve never heard of or even knew existed will allow you to meet amazing people and learn so much about yourself and others along the way.

Tony Suleiman Jr. ’18 is an editorial intern in the Office of University Relations.