Colleges and universities are interested and want to know how potential students spend their time. The activities section on a college application is paramount to the selection process. It enables the school to learn more about you, what your passions are and how you spend your time outside of the classroom. Many students become confused at what they should include as an extracurricular on a college application. One important factor to remember when writing this section is that the college is looking for you to include personal activities and hobbies as well as organized school or community involvements.
Extracurricular activities are essential in any students' life because it shows you have other interests in addition to excelling academically. More often than not colleges are looking for students who make their student body well rounded, not just students who are well-rounded.
Examples of what would be typically included in the extracurricular section would be:
- Personal activities – reading, writing, staying healthy (exercising, bike riding)
- Hobbies – knitting, collecting stamps/coins, crafting model airplanes, sewing
- School activities – leadership positions (Captain of a team, Editor of a paper), awards, etc.
- Clubs and organizations – within school and outside of school
- Community service – any volunteer opportunities you participate in or give your time to
- Arts, Music, and Sports- any participation in these areas
- Church Activity- retreats, missionary work, church sponsored events
Primarily, colleges are looking for students who have a real passion/interest outside of their academic studies. Extracurricular activities should provide a glimpse into your personality and your commitment to a goal or interest. Students applying to colleges should always keep in mind that although it is great to have extracurricular activities to list on an application, the rule of thumb here is…quality is much more impressive than quantity when it comes to extracurricular activities.