Benefits to being over-involved

  • 1 min to read

In college, students have the ability to make their own decisions and either become just as active or inactive in their college community as they want to be. In most cases, smaller undergraduate schools, like Doane, have a greater amount of students participating in a lot of co-curricular activities that make up most of their time. 

Associate Director of the College to Career Center, Sarah Begay says that the initial transfer into college is the source of the over-involvement. 

“A lot of high school students come from a high school environment where they could be involved in a lot of things because at the high school level the commitment always isn't as deep,” Begay said. “They have that same expectation that they can just come here and mirror that same experience, and it's just so much harder to do at the college level.” 

As many are aware, this can lead to problems such as fatigue, high levels of stress, weakness to illness, etc.  However, the latter of this fact caused Doane’s capstone reporters to wonder: do more extracurriculars mean better outcomes for students? The answer varies depending on who you ask. 

The Director of Leadership and the College to Career Center, Quint Geis,  says that there's a misconception between how many things students are involved in, and what companies and businesses are looking for in a college graduate. 

“They want to know that you can translate or share transferable skills about how you put in this ungodly amount of time into baseball and how that makes you good for a finance company per say,” Geis said. “It's more about bringing life to those experiences rather than showing them 5 million different directions of focus.” 

This type of hiring based on expressing your true self rings true for employers of college students and graduates. Kendra Feather, the Promotions Director and Director of the Hiring Committee for a local radio station,The Rural Radio Network, says that one of the things that she looks for when hiring is social skills. 

“What I really looked for is people skills, sometimes you're going into a tragedy and they can handle it, and provide a caring touch and consult with people no matter what happens,” Feather said. “You can always train someone in a trade, but you can't teach those personal relation skills.”

In conclusion, it's important to keep in mind the balance between your activities and your downtime. If not, this could be detrimental to your health and would be overall leading to a lack of quality and focus in your work that counts. And no matter how many activities you're in, it's about what you learn from those experiences that will appeal to others.