Today we have a treat for you all! Student blogger Aysha Bateman shares with you The Benefits of Extra-curricular Activities focusing on three categories: Sports, Arts and Volunteering.
We are always reminded of the benefits of extra-curricular activities throughout our academic lives;
“You can work on your transferable skills”
“It will look good on your CV”
“You’ll develop interpersonal skills”
Although these statements are true, we often dismiss them as our educators trying to trick us into doing unnecessary, extra work.
My personal experience of extra-curricular activities has been fantastic. I partake in many opportunities outside my studies and I believe it has contributed massively to my growth as an individual and to my employability. There are three categories of additional activities that I think are the most beneficial.
Team sports don’t only keep us fit but are an excellent way to develop team skills. Sometimes we don’t realise when we are having fun or playing competitively that we are using our communication skills and the strengths of our team to produce maximum results. Sports also develops resilience and positive sportsmanship.
When we lose a game we rarely give up forever, we are often more motivated to do better next time. This type of perseverance is then translated into our everyday life, which also means we are less likely to be “sore losers" because set backs are seen as learning opportunities rather than failures.
The Arts isn’t just painting and drawing, but, drama, dance, poetry and music also. These types of extra-curricular activities help improve creativity by allowing us to think outside the box and letting us learn how to express ourselves through different mediums. This aids us in our work life because we are always solving problems, so having experience in the arts can improve our creative problem-solving ability.
The Arts are also a great confidence booster and can make you feel very accomplished but most importantly for me, is the development of empathy. The ability to put yourself in someone else’s shoes to understand where they are coming from can help deescalate conflict and improve social skills.
I am a strong advocate for volunteering as it has improved my understanding of the wider world and the realities of many people in my community. Having this understanding means we are not too sheltered from the intensity of reality and allows us to be more down to earth.
Volunteering can also create purpose, especially if you are working for a cause that means a lot to you. Furthermore, it can make us very selfless, which is a great quality to have as it will make the people around us appreciative and happy, which in turn increases your happiness.
If you’re wondering what to do or are stuck doing the same things, have a look at Graduate + opportunities and online resources.
Doing the Graduate + award can also help broaden your horizon and help you try some new things as you will be encouraged to step out of your comfort zone.
Another benefit of extra-curricular activities is that they can be extremely fun, so even if you don’t plan on using them to boost your employability make sure you participate in something now and then to just enjoy yourself.
Aysha is a true example of the incredible and life changing experiences you can have when you begin your journey at BCU.
If you’d like to tell us about your journey you can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to chat with us further!