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Whether it’s Greek Life, a seemingly stressful foreign language club or something completely different, like a rock climbing or skiing club, there’s probably a club (or several) that you’ve never considered joining.

And I would encourage you to look into those clubs.

Why? Because college is about learning more about yourself, and how can you learn more about yourself if you only participate in things you already know you like?

When I went to my first zumba class, I didn’t think I’d love zumba. I’m terrible at dancing. I spent all of middle and high school trying to get out of gym class. I don’t like gyms. But I love zumba.

When I started college, I never thought I would learn Chinese, join a group that required me to speak in front of people and lead activities, or write about hip-hop.

But getting involved in these activities has inspired me and shaped me. Check out these other reasons you should consider joining the groups you never thought you’d join.

1. You don’t want to get too comfortable

Obviously it’s good to feel comfortable on your campus. However, once you get wrapped up in a routine, you can start feeling bored or having negative attitudes about your college. Joining an organization that’s different from everything you’ve ever done is a great way to see another side of your university because though you think you’ve seen everything your school has to offer, you haven’t.

2. You’ll meet people you wouldn’t meet otherwise

Your comfort zone is full of the people you see all the time. Most likely, they’re involved in the same activities or major as you are. There are a bunch of other people you walk past all the time but never talk to or get to know. It’s difficult to talk to people when you’re just walking across campus, but it’s not difficult to meet people through student organizations.

3. You’re not the same person

You’ve changed since high school. Maybe you once hated sports because you didn’t like gym class. But in college, you could love the gym. Give it a try.

4. Your perspective will change

Nearly everything I’ve learned in college I’ve learned in unexpected places from unexpected people. Though I’ve taken thought-provoking classes and learned from interesting professors, people I’ve met elsewhere have taught me so much, just by sharing their perspectives and experiences. By joining organizations that you never thought you’d join, you’ll definitely meet people who are different from you and that’s so, so valuable.

5. You can

Why get involved in random organizations? Because you can. When else are you going to have this opportunity? You’re surrounded by so many groups with different interests, and you have the chance to be part of any of it. Why not? You could learn a lot about yourself and about others.

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the author

Paige Sheffield is a student at Central Michigan University. In addition to writing for The Prospect, she writes for her campus newspaper, You On Top Magazine, and more. She is also a TP Editorial Internship Co-coordinator. She loves poetry, coffee, statement jewelry, zumba, politics, and the Great Lakes. She is passionate about arts education and currently volunteers and interns with organizations that provide art-related programming to underserved populations. You can follow her on twitter @paige_sheff.

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