As the new 2013-2014 school year starts, you’re probably thinking about what to do to occupy your time, other than ridiculous amounts of studying and homework. In high school, clubs are a wonderful way to get involved and find things you’re passionate about. But what if there’s not a club you’re interested in? Sure there’s the typical National Honor Society, Beta Club, and Habitat For Humanity, but maybe you’re more interested in the arts or politics. If there’s no existing club for you, think about starting a new club.
Starting a brand new club at your school may seem intimidating, but if you follow a few simple steps, paired with fierce dedication, you can start a thriving club that makes a difference at your school.
1. Find a faculty sponsor. Most schools require you to find a faculty member that will sponsor your club. Finding a sponsor that really enjoys the topic of your club will make sure he/she is devoted to helping. For example, I am a member of a group called The Tight Knit Group, a knitting and crocheting club that donates handmade items to charity. Our sponsor has knit and crocheted for years before this club started. Because she enjoys it so much, she is more invested in helping with projects and finding ways to make us better crafters. Finding a good sponsor is key in the startup of your club.
2. Seek administration approval. Your sponsor will play a big role in asking permission to form this club and find a place to meet each week. Without this approval, the administration will likely not see the club as legitimate.
3. Find members. At first it will be beneficial to find a few friends that are willing to be dedicated members to help get the club up and running. These people will likely be the officers for the first year. These members will also help you to set a list of goals for what you want to accomplish in the first few months of your club. As Ellie Lueders, a Senior Intern for The Prospect, says “With a strong advisor backing you (a faculty member known to have sway on campus, who is flexible to work with, and shares your passion for the subject), and a good group of reliable members, you have the foundation of a successful club. However, in order to build from that foundation, you, as the leader (or vital community member), need to know what you want the club to accomplish and express that in a series of measurable goals.”
4. Advertise, advertise, advertise. Advertising your club is crucial in order to find more members and get the name out there. Flyers, school announcements, and social media are great ways to make sure the student body is aware that there is a new club on campus. Clubs that are nationally known, such as Habitat For Humanity, may be easier to find members for, but don’t get discouraged if people don’t take to your new club right away.
Now that you’ve started your first club, it’s up to you to make sure it grows to be a wonderful club. This variety leads to a diverse group of people who won’t all be your favorite, but regardless, you’ll make long lasting friendships.” Don’t be worried if it’s a small group, sometimes those are the best.
All your hard work will pay off when you see people come together to enjoy something you helped create. Always keep that in mind when it seems like you’re getting nowhere with your group. Good luck and I wish you all the best with your new club!