• Erick Torres

How Diverse Student-Led Organizations Create A Beneficial College Experience

Updated: Sep 21, 2020

As the final weeks of August approach us, it can only mean one thing: back to school. Yes, it can be a drag waking up at the crack of dawn to spend about eight hours of your life locked up inside four walls of a classroom, but despite the stress of books, tests and lectures, school is a time where many discover their identity as they transition into the "real world."

Making this transition from the classroom to the boardroom can be a struggle, but have no fear because you're not alone. By joining clubs and organizations filled with diverse ideas and people, you will be able to connect with others with similar interests while expanding the lens in which you view the world from. So, if you're looking to pave a path for a better college experience here's how joining diverse student-led organizations can help you make steps in the right direction.

1. Networking

One of the most important lessons you'll learn time and time again throughout college is the importance of networking. This means finding connections to new adventures and opportunities to experiences you could have never thought of. Having connections not only makes your college experience better, but it can make it easier to accomplish goals that you might have in mind.

For example, I was fortunate enough to attend and perform at a few school events due to being part of Hallyu Wave, a student-led organization based at The University of Texas at Dallas that specializes in both Korean entertainment and culture. I was able to see how some of the events were created and ran by the organization leaders, which is perfect for those interested in making connections and understanding what happens behind the scenes of major school events.

2. Skill Set

Joining a diverse organization allows you to learn new skills revolving around leadership, social, and organizational realms.

After being involved with the Hallyu Wave for two years, I was fortunate enough to become President of the organization. It has not been a smooth ride, but it has taught me the importance of being patient and how to be more responsible.

As for social skills, there are a lot of opportunities to practice and grow. Even though I am a very social person, it allows me to make new friends and connections. For those who tend to be more reserved, this will aid in increasing your people skills and allows you to work on breaking out of your shell to become more open to your environment.

Finally, joining these groups will quickly teach you importance of being organized. Juggling being an officer and a full-time student is no easy task. However, it’s very challenging in a beneficial manner. It has taught me to problem-solve and manage time. For example, with daily activities, such as events, meetings, and other day-to-day tasks, I must schedule it all effectively and efficiently.

3. Relationships

One of the long-lasting effects of joining student-led organizations is creating and building on new connections.

When I first started college, no one from my high school had decided to attend UTD, meaning I would start my next chapter fresh, not knowing a single person. Being involved has led me to meet and connect with some of the best people in the world - in my opinion. They not only have the same interests as me, but we can beneficially help each other out through life and career decisions. It has taken me to more social events and places that I would not have experienced otherwise.

I can guarantee that the people you become friends with by joining an organization will end up becoming the people that make your college experience more enriching. And the best part - being able to collaborate with them in the future as you all successfully go down your own lane.

As we enter the school year, and the final two semesters of college for myself, joining student-led organizations like Hallyu Wave will be the highlight of your educational career. It has not only made my college experience better, but will forever have a special place in my heart.

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