How to Boost Your College Application Through Clubs

Rubin Caco

Competition in the college admissions landscape can often be very daunting. Nowhere is this competition more fierce than at the top national US schools. The higher ranked the school, the more selective. Admissions officers at these schools read through thousands of applications each year and sometimes spend no more than several minutes of review per application. So, for students to have the best chance at acceptance to their dream schools, they must perfect each part of their application—especially their extracurricular activities such as clubs. 

While it may seem like a given to participate in activities such as clubs, summer camps, and extracurricular programs, merely participating may not be enough when aiming for admittance into the top US universities. 

Leadership Roles

One of the standout aspects of a student's profile that college admissions officers note is a student's capacity for leadership and ability to impact their community. Admissions officers at the top US schools are interested in creating a robust and diverse student body composed of students who are passionate about their fields and have unique things to offer. These institutions often strive to develop leaders and industry pioneers, so students who demonstrate these qualities early into their schooling have better results in their college applications. 

Taking leadership roles in clubs demonstrates a student's ability to manage responsibilities, lead others, and make decisions—qualities colleges value. However, students shouldn't aim for just the title alone; they should strive to make a measurable, positive impact on their environment. Admissions officers can tell when students take activities just to impress them and when students take activities because they have a genuine interest in that extracurricular. Students should aim for the latter and illustrate their dedication to their interests.  

Even more poignant, students' leadership roles ought to be in activities relevant to their interests. There's nothing wrong with students exploring different interests and activities. Still, when strategizing an activities list for college applications, each part of a student's application should mesh well with one another to create a memorable theme. 

This "Application Persona" that students display will be a crucial factor in whether or not they are accepted. To learn more, see our blog Application Personas: How Top Colleges Find the Best Students.

Creating Impact in Your Community

Creating an impact in your community goes hand-in-hand with being an effective leader. Guiding others, helping those in need, and doing good work that benefits those around you is all about developing your own leadership skills as much as it is helping your community. Colleges appreciate students who can bring solutions to real-world problems. In terms of clubs, students should aim to participate in clubs that create a positive impact and provide leadership opportunities. 

Clubs can be used as a platform to launch community service projects, charity fundraising, or help those in need. For a proactive approach, students can identify an issue or need in their local community and develop plans to address those issues. This could be as small as fundraising for an art fair or as ambitious as building infrastructure for villages in third-world countries. 

Students should aim for a healthy variety of activities and organizations that are within their ability to participate in and relevant to their areas of interest. Not only will these efforts benefit students' communities, but they will also demonstrate their commitment to making a positive impact.

If your student wants to increase their leadership capabilities and create a compelling signature project for their college applications, InGenius Prep offers our Leadership and Innovation Lab, where students get expert guidance to launch successful ventures in their field and demonstrate a tangible community impact. Click here to learn more about our program

Network and learn from Professionals in Your Field

Networking is a powerful tool for learning and growth. Rising scholars often lack experience and hands-on knowledge in their fields, so cooperating with working professionals and making connections with peers is an excellent way to gain insight into your area of interest and apply that knowledge to your future prospects. 

Students can use clubs as an opportunity to attend events, seminars, and conferences where they can meet professionals and begin forging connections early in their careers. Not only will this help guide students throughout their schooling, but these connections can also open doors to internships, shadowing, and other job opportunities in the future. 

Students who need specialized guidance can also consider InGenius Prep's Academic Mentorship program, which connects students with professors, PhD fellows, and industry experts from the top US schools. 

Learn More from Our Industry Experts

As the leading expert in college admissions, InGenius Prep is dedicated to guiding students and giving them the best chance at getting accepted to their dream schools. Our Application Counseling and Candidacy Building programs pair students with a team of admissions experts, including Former Admissions Officers and Graduate Coaches from the top national US colleges. To learn more about our services, schedule a free strategy call with one of our advisors today and begin your student's journey to the Ivy League schools!

Schedule a free consultation

to find out how we can help you get accepted.