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March 19, 2012 | by  | in Opinion |
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VUWSA Clubs Officer

“Go my sons burn your books,
Buy yourselves stout shoes.
Get away to the mountains, the deserts And the deepest recesses of the Earth. In this way and no other will you gain A true knowledge of things”
-Peter Severinus

While burning books or exploring the wilderness are not the action that I am advocating as your Clubs Officer;
I do strongly suggest that a complete education is one that has a contribution from outside the lecture theatre or tutorial room.

Last week, Kelburn campus was flooded with affiliated clubs, societies and rep groups for VUWSA Clubs Week. The hallways of Cotton and McLaurin transformed into a bold statement of the diversity of extra-curricular activities that Victoria students can engage in.

Clubs at Victoria University are high performers, from DebSoc to the Flying Disc Club. Not only are clubs winning international awards and competitions but also providing support networks and activities for cultural and social groups. Getting involved is a pathway to meeting great people, broadening your education, developing communication skills and learning things about yourself—attributes that readings and examinations cannot teach alone.

You may be reading this wondering how you can afford to squeeze training or a meeting in between important Law Alive readings—but international research suggests that you can’t afford not to. Iowa State University found a “correlation between involvement in activities and academic achievement”—particularly higher grades, better social skills and a lower dropout rate. More crucially they saw that students in clubs developed self-respect, self-esteem and self- confidence, as well as analytical skills and creative problem solving skills in a way that the class room can’t.

While we are spoilt for choice at Victoria with over 70 VUWSA affiliated clubs to choose from already, if you can’t quite find what you are looking for drop me a line at clubs.officer@vuwsa.org.nz. I can guide you through the process of affiliating a new club on campus and let you know how VUWSA can help you.

If the goal of a university education is to “to enhance their personal development”, as Vice Chancellor, Prof. Pat Walsh suggests then I have no doubt that involvement in a club is an excellent means of going about that. A real education, an education for life, is one which occurs at least partly outside the classroom. So go my sons, burn your books and join a club.

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