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Graphic by: Len Duenas

In my first year at UH, everyone told me I should join a club or organization. Since I was new to the school as a transfer student, I was nervous about joining anything, so I didn’t. However, the following year I ended up joining Cooglife and getting a job on campus which enriched my time here more than I could have imagined.

My junior and senior years have been the best of my three years at UH because I got involved.

Writing for Cooglife has given me so many cool experiences like seeing one of my favorite bands in concert and having the opportunity to write a review of the show. It has also allowed me to grow as a writer and given me experience for my future career.

My first article was a brownie recipe written by my late uncle and the amount of support I received from my friends and even my bosses at work was incredible. Being able to see my work physically printed and have the people in my life read it means the world to me. I wouldn’t have been able to do that if I hadn’t stepped out of my comfort zone and got involved in Cooglife. 

This past semester, I joined Coog Radio as a writer for their online blog and it has been so much fun. I know that I want to work in the music industry in some capacity, so having even a small amount of experience is beneficial. I’ve met some really cool people through Coog Radio and am looking forward to being even more involved in my last semester at UH.

While an on-campus job isn’t necessarily an organization, I definitely view it as being involved on campus. I know that finding a job on campus can be difficult as it’s in high demand, so I feel extremely lucky.

My on-campus job gave me my best friends that I don’t know what I would do without. I don’t view them as co-workers anymore, as we hang out so much they’ve just become my friends. If I hadn’t applied for this job, I probably never would have met them because we all have vastly different majors. We have been there for each other in some of our toughest times, and I wouldn’t have them if I hadn’t gotten involved.

If I could give any advice for making the most of time spent in college, getting involved would definitely be on that list.

In my first year, I didn’t think it was that important and didn’t understand why everyone pushed it so much. However, now that I’ve seen the growth that can come with getting the most out of my college experience outside of academics, I understand why it’s pushed so much.

Nowadays, unfortunately, getting a degree isn’t enough to prove competence in a field. Employers want to see applicants applying themselves outside of the classroom and doing things on their own.

Finding a club or organization in a major or career path looks great on a resume and usually gives real-world experience. Putting yourself out there can be scary, but once you do it it gets so much easier. I would encourage everyone to find something that gives them a sense of belonging, whether that’s an organization related to their major or a club related to a hobby.

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