Clubs vs. jobs: Which is the better option?

By Sky Opila

College is a time to try a lot of things, find out who you really are and do pretty much whatever you want, whenever you want. That is, provided that you have a way to pay for college and are thinking about your post-college plans by doing well in classes and joining the right clubs and organizations.

With all this stuff to do, time management becomes important. You may find yourself without any free time at all.

Many students have to make the choice of working to pay for college. Others don’t have to work during the school year and can take on a very active role in many clubs.

But what truly is more important in the long run, having a job or joining clubs?

Having a job

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    Many students are forced to pay for college themselves. They are not lucky enough to have their parents pay for college and often get caught up in student loans, sending them into many years of post-college debt. These are the students who spend most of their weekends at work.

    It is pretty easy to see the pros of having a job. Not only do you have constant cash flow, but you learn very valuable time management skills. In addition to helping pay for college, the extra money you will make gives you more to spend on the weekends, if you can ever get one off.

    However, working every weekend is by no means a glamorous lifestyle.

    You may miss out on activities like going to football games, spending a Saturday afternoon on the Quad playing Frisbee or exploring many of the hidden secrets around C-U.

    While it is necessary to have money in order to pay for college or just to accrue in general, having a job during the semester may not be the best choice during your college career if it means missing out on being active in a club.

    Joining clubs

    Registered Student Organizations are amazing things. If you can’t find the type of club you’re looking for in one of the hundreds of RSOs on campus, it is not too hard to create your own.

    RSOs give students opportunities to really build something, to start something from scratch or to really change the face of an organization.

    They also provide great padding for your resume, and they will start great conversations in job interviews when asked about your experiences in college and give you the opportunity to stand out from thousands of college graduates that may one day be applying for the same job as you.

    Standing out during interviewing phases for job applications is extremely important because you want to make a lasting impact on your interviewer.

    And RSOs are a great way to stand out.

    More than likely, interviewers will hire students who can talk about changes they made in their RSO versus the students who spent all of their free time flipping burgers.

    So what do I do?

    Making money is obviously important to college students. However, if you can handle having a job and being active in a RSO, I really suggest doing it. What you gain from both experiences combined will help you out amazingly in the long run, not to mention enhance your time management skills exponentially.

    However, if you are in a position to decide, I would suggest joining an RSO. As I said before, the opportunities placed in front of you from an RSO will be once-in-a-lifetime opportunities, and interviewers will love to hear about these things.

    So, don’t just go out and join any old RSO; find one that works for you.

    And please, don’t just be a lump, but make a difference in your group. You will appreciate this hard work for the rest of your life.