Staff Editorial: It’s never too late to join clubs

The spring activities fair was last Friday, held in the Athletic Center for anyone brave enough to endure the frigid temperature to get there. It was markedly different from the fall activities fair, held in September — not only in terms of weather, but also the atmosphere inside. 

While the fall fair was buzzing with excitement, everyone signing up for many more clubs than their schedules could conceivably hold, this one was a little more subdued. Students appeared a little more anxious and unsure, often nervously admitting that they were a junior — was it too late to join? 

We are here to tell you that no, it’s not too late. If you’re a freshman who couldn’t find their footing in the first few months of college; a junior who’s trying to pick up something new; or, yes, even a senior who’s been eyeing that one club for years but never had the time — just do it. 

For anybody who is still searching for their “people” or group, we want to encourage you to keep trying. Many of us have joined clubs way, way past those initial weeks of college and realized that it was the place we were meant to be. The worst that can happen if you try something new is that you find you don’t like it as much as you thought you would. The best thing? You find friends, a hobby, and a newfound purpose for beekeeping (or whatever your “thing” may be). 

College is putting yourself out there — for doing that dance tryout, learning how to DJ on KWUR, or joining an affinity group that your high school didn’t have. And while those activities may lead to discomfort, or embarrassment, or even failure, that’s also what college is for. If joining a new club or organization teaches you how to fail and move on, that’s okay. 

While we encourage you to go for it and try out for that dance team or student theater production, we also understand that the existence of competitive clubs at WashU can appear overwhelming and limiting. During times when campus is abuzz with business frat rush or a cappella auditions, it can seem like tryout-based groups are all that WashU has to offer. The good news — there is an abundance of clubs at WashU that are excited to accept anyone interested in the group. Regardless of whether a group selects less than five people each year or remains open to hundreds, each can bring valuable senses of community and enrich your college experience.

Everyone has probably heard of, at least vaguely, this thing known as “The WashU Bubble.” As a simple explanation, it means that our campus is pretty sheltered from the outside world. Even though we’re Washington University in St. Louis, it can be easy to forget the “in St. Louis” part if you stay within The Bubble. Clubs are a great way to begin to venture outside that bubble. Try a service club, outdoors club, or even run club for an easy way to force yourself outside of the routine of class, gym, dining hall, class that can keep you within the same few square miles all week. 

Within all of the excitement of clubs on campus, remember the importance of balance in your schedule. While we emphasize that it’s never too late to get involved in clubs, make sure to not overextend yourself. It’s not about the number of clubs you can sign your name onto, but rather the communities you can find in joining a group of people coming together around a shared interest, hobby, or passion.

So whether you are in one of your first semesters here or your last, it’s never too late to get involved. Selfish self-promo — that includes our community here at StudLife!

Staff editorials reflect the opinion of the majority of our editorial board members. The editorial board operates independently of our newsroom and includes members of the junior and senior staff. 

Via Poolos, Editor-in-Chief

Reilly Brady, Managing Forum Editor

Jasmine Stone, Senior Forum Editor

Sylvie Richards, Senior Forum Editor

Jordan Spector, Junior Forum Editor

Amelia Raden, Junior Forum Editor

Riley Herron, Managing Sports Editor

Lewis Rand, Junior Sports Editor

Elaheh Khazi, Junior Sports Editor

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