Extracurricular Activities Resume Examples
By Mark Swartz
Monster Contributing Writer
There's a quiet struggle raging on campuses across Canada. Students fight every day to allocate their precious time efficiently.
One main battleground: whether to pursue higher grades at all cost, or get involved in extra-curricular activities too. This is an important decision when graduation rolls around. Some employers are more interested in your grade-point average alone. Others want to see a more balanced resume from students.
If you're looking for the balanced approach, extra-curricular activities can help. Joining campus clubs, getting involved in student government, contributing content to the school's media...all of these may be available to you depending on where you're enrolled.
Campus Clubs and Organizations
One of the simplest extra-curricular activities is to join a group. Most schools have all sorts of clubs on campus. These can fall into a number of categories:
· Sports and fitness
· Environment and ecology
· Academic or faculty-specific (e.g. Math and Science, Law, Trades, Economics/Finance)
· Cultural heritage based on your ethnic background or religious beliefs
· Arts and humanities
· Sexual identity such as LGBT
· Social activities and other fun events
· Charity and money-raising
There are also some pretty unusual groups out there. For example, Mount Royal University has a 420 Green Club, dedicated to responsible use of marijuana. University of Victoria has a Pokémon club (seriously). And Macleans magazine lists the top 10 weirdest campus clubs in Canada.
Interested in politics and in learning the levers of power? Or maybe you just want to make a difference to your fellow students. In any case, just about every campus has some sort of local governance run for - and by - its attendees.
These student unions need people at a variety of levels. In some cases you could actually run for office. It's a wonderful way to learn about how politics, voting and campaigning work. Also essential are people to carry out administrative duties.
Student union positions may be paid or unpaid. They can be an excellent training ground for jobs in government, business and politics. Often, student unions in Canada are members of either the Canadian Alliance of Student Associations or the Canadian Federation of Students. The Province of Quebec has its own federation called Quebec Federation of University Students (Fédération étudiante universitaire du Québec or FEUQ).
Ways Of Getting Involved
Extra-curricular activities let you get involved to the extent you want to. At the basic level is being a member of a club or organization. You'll gain from meeting new people and learning about the area of interest your club is focused on. Also it demonstrates your commitment to that area, something future employers might appreciate.
A step beyond basic membership is active involvement. You might volunteer to help out. This could include...
· helping to plan and run events
· keeping in contact with other members to make sure they know about events and show up
· collecting funds and donations
· promoting your group using various media and social networks
· welcoming new members and orienting them to the group
Furthering your involvement could mean taking an official leadership role. Most clubs and groups have an executive committee. Positions are mainly unpaid. Typical roles available are Secretary, Treasurer, Marketing and Public Relations, Vice-President and President. Any of these will expose you to organizing and running an operation in a function that carries responsibility.
Remember To Put It On Your Resume
Lots of extra-curricular activities look good on your resume. If you can, try to choose at least one group, role or activity that will show employers your dedication to the field you might want to get hired in.
When graduation nears, update your resume. Detail those roles and activities. What was your exact involvement or title? In which year(s) of study? Go ahead and mention highlights of these in your cover letter, if appropriate. Then talk about your involvement at interview time.
Employers like students who go the extra kilometer. Doing so via extra-curricular activities can make it fun for you at the same time.