Want to Wow Colleges? Here are Top Extracurricular Activities that Will Do the Trick

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Want to Wow Colleges? Here are Top Extracurricular Activities that Will Do the Trick

Getting into colleges is no walk in the park, that’s for sure. You would have to get a passing grade, of course, and several other academic requirements off your plate. But there’s one aspect that a lot of people overlook, and that’s extracurricular activities. Now you’re thinking, “shouldn’t it just be about having a high GPA?” Actually, it’s not. Colleges believe that what you do outside your classes is just as important as what you do in them. Still, that doesn’t mean you have to dabble in pretty much every after-school activity you can think of to boost your chances of getting into college. As you can expect, some extracurricular activities rank higher than others, and you will know exactly which ones in the next few minutes. Let’s answer this really important question first.


Why is it important to pick the perfect extracurricular activity?

Colleges and institutions of higher learning want to know what you can bring to the campus and find out as much about you as they can. We all know that grades alone are not a reflection of our abilities or passion as individuals. How do you contribute to your community? What talent do you possess, and how do you use this? What is the real YOU? Your extracurricular activities tell a lot about your interests and goals as an individual. This is why you shouldn’t pick just anything, simply because you want to stand a higher chance of being accepted into colleges.

Let your extracurricular activities be a reflection of your strengths and contributions to those around you. It’s definitely better than spending all summer partying and addicted to your social media life. Still, some after-school activities are more impressive than others. So, let’s get right to the list of top extracurricular activities that will help in demonstrating your skill on college applications.


01. Sports

Are you surprised to see sports on the list? You shouldn’t be. There’s a good reason why many colleges offer scholarships to athletes that stood out during their high school days. However, even if you were not exceptional in any sport during high school, participating in one in the first place says a lot about you. Your experience with sports matters because it shows your resilience and determination. If you were actively involved in team sports like football and basketball, this indicates that you can be a team player. Bonus points if you were the captain because this points to your leadership traits. Putting this on your college application lets admission officers know that you can be supportive in a group setting and work well with others.

02. Debates

Public speaking is a big deal in today’s world and even more important when it’s time to drop those college application essays. As a debater, you have to learn to speak in front of people, ranging from less than ten to as many as thousands of people. Therefore, you would have to be knowledgeable on various topics as you will be expected to deliver only facts. With debates, you are exposed to societal and political issues, setting you apart from the average student. Knowing this is not enough. To stand out with your debate team, you would have to understand how to formulate intelligent opinions and connect this to everyday events.

03. Competitive clubs

How do you think it would look on your college application that you participated in a mathematics competition and had one of the highest scores? Definitely a boost. Activities like this and even being a part of school clubs like the chess club lets colleges know that you have other interests outside the classroom. The good thing about this is that it still falls under the academic category, but it shows how passionate and competitive you can get. In college, you would have to demonstrate how well you can handle tasks under pressure. So, participating in competitions is a great way to show that you have what it takes to do this on a bigger stage.

04. Internships

Internships are definitely not reserved for college, as a lot of people think. So, you don’t have to wait until you get there before applying for internships. This is a great platform to expand your knowledge in a particular field, especially related to what you would love to study in college. So, if you do have the opportunity to complete one in high school, you shouldn’t hesitate to take it up. Admission officers will be excited to discover that you ventured out of your comfort zone to work in a somewhat adult setting. You could even turn your internship into an actual job with these tips. Of course, we all know how tough it could get during an internship, and these college officers are aware of that. So, let them know how proactive you can be by including the various internships you have explored.

05. Volunteer work

Giving back to your community through volunteer work will never go out of style. Sure, it might seem cliché, especially as many counselors in high school encourage students to volunteer more. Still, that doesn’t take away the fact that you should be genuinely interested in helping others as much as you can. If you do have the opportunity to volunteer locally or internationally, snap it up and use this opportunity to show your passion for lending a helping hand. There are tons of causes you can explore, whether helping the elderly or advocating for a better environment. All you have to do is find a cause you’re genuinely passionate about and have fun while doing something you love. When you showcase this on your college application, it’s a great way to get those nods of approval and an admission letter.

06. Leadership roles

How well can you hold your own in a leadership position? It’s one thing to have it listed out on numerous college applications and another to have verifiable evidence of your skills as a leader. A great way to stand out from thousands of other applicants is to show the various leadership positions you have occupied over the years. Most colleges look out for your leadership potential, and these essential criteria could be the gamechanger in our application. There’s no limit to the leadership roles you can include when applying for admission. Whether you were the captain of your school’s football team, the student union leader, or the president of the debate club, don’t hesitate to talk about how much impact you made in these positions. It could even be the role you played as the focal point in volunteer projects. To be honest, that’s an extra point as you have shown that you spend a considerable chunk of your time giving back to those around you while also being at the forefront of the projects. It reflects your confidence in dealing with tasks and leading a group of people.

07. Working with the school newspaper

How do you show your interpersonal and writing skills on your college applications? You can do this by outlining your experience working with your school’s newspaper. Whether you take on an administrative role where you’re in charge of what gets into the paper or a periodic contributor, this is a great way to polish up your college application nicely. You don’t have to be a journalist to do this. All it takes is dedication and a lot of research to ensure that you’re writing only facts for the school’s newspaper. Several years ago, we would have advised you to have physical copies of this. Still, today’s computer age means that anyone can find your articles online if they know where to look. It definitely wouldn’t hurt to nudge the admission officers in that direction and have them discover your writing skills. Like we said earlier, this is perfect for demonstrating how good you are at passing information on a large scale and communicating your ideas. Since college also involves a lot of research, working with the school newspaper is an excellent way to show that you’re experienced moving down this path.

Ready to make your college applications shine? These extracurricular activities will get you on the right path. However, you should make sure that you truly have passion for whatever activity you opt for and don’t forget to have fun while at it. Still considering your degree options? Reach out to us to help you make a perfect choice.



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1 Comment
    • Noel Fernando
      Oct 13, 2021 01:05 am Reply

      This is an excellent article for the students who are willing to join a good university.

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