/Clubs and Groups Vital to College Experience
Oswego’s sororities worked together to collect items for the SUNY Oswego Toy Drive, which benefits local families.

Clubs and Groups Vital to College Experience

By Deborah Jeanne Sergeant

Joining clubs and groups in college isn’t just a fun way to pass time. It can also help you network with people important to your future and learn more about the world—and yourself. 

Your new club friend may help you launch a business, meet your first employer or simply help you learn more about her culture. 

Michael Paestella
Michael Paestella

“A lot of student affairs people have done research showing making a connection within the first six to 10 weeks is so important,” said Michael Paestella, assistant director of campus life for student involvement at SUNY Oswego. 

He suggested student organizations as a means of becoming part of the fabric of the campus community. SUNY operates a student involvement fair to expose students to what’s available. Paestella encourages students to check out and consider joining two “no-brainers”—groups in which they would obviously feel interest—and one or two groups that focus on a subject completely unknown to them

Joining groups can help you become more employable. Paestella said that beyond job-essential skills, employers seek candidates who have proven they can work with a team and communicate well with others—just the skills students gain from joining student organizations. 

“If you can’t communicate with a diverse community or plan with those who can’t communicate with you, will you be successful?” Paestella said. 

Andrew Poole, public and media relations associate with Cayuga Community College, also said that it is important to join groups. 

“Student clubs are a fantastic way to meet new friends with shared interests, apply classroom lessons to real world opportunities, support the local community through service activities, and to simply grow as a student and person,” Poole said. “They are also an integral part of making college an enjoyable, fulfilling experience. With so much of the past year in a virtual setting, we’re encouraging all of our students to find a club (or start one) where they can resume building those life-long friendships that student activities always support.”

Nsikak Ekong
Nsikak Ekong

Nsikak Ekong, a second semester senior at Oswego, is a member of the ALANA Association and African Student Association.

 “It’s been very helpful,” Ekong said. “I’ve met a variety of students and there have been some problems that needed solving, collaborating with faculty and administration and other students. I wouldn’t be able to do that if I hadn’t jointed that organization.  We work together for a specific goal.

 “Get involved. You never know what opportunities that could come up.”

Photo: Oswego’s sororities worked together to collect items for the SUNY Oswego Toy Drive, which benefits local families.

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