Published: Feb. 2015
By Shauli Bar-On
I would argue I learned more after school hours than I did during class time. Participating in after school clubs is an essential experience every high school student should take part in.
It is wrong to say one club is “better” than another because clubs are categorized by their subject. There are science-based, political-based, history-based, and oratory-based clubs.
Ever since my freshman year, I knew I had a strong interest in speech, law, and politics. I participated in the speech and debate club and mock trial club. These clubs were interesting, educational, and a great source of diversion.
I wanted to implement some of my political interests into a club on campus, but I could not find one that suited these needs. The beauty of clubs is that they are extremely customizable – if a desired club is not on-campus, any student can take a leadership role and create his/her own.
Therefore, a group of my friends and I founded a Model United Nations Club.
Becoming a club officer gives students a chance to assume a role of responsibility and lead others in club activities. Taking charge and organizing club meetings, tryouts, and competitions is a lot of work but gives students a feeling of satisfaction and accomplishment.
Clubs with competitions are especially fun as members of these club truly get to know each other and bond. As part of Mock Trial, Speech and Debate, and Model United Nations, I was able to connect with students from all grade levels and learned not to be intimidated by age differences.
Competitions also require teamwork and collaboration. Working in groups, large or small, is a skill necessary to succeed in life. Mock Trial and Model United Nations both call for intense synergy and partnerships, which is difficult yet rewarding.
Moreover, some clubs provide a chance for the individual spotlight. Speech and debate is generally a solo or partner effort and success in competitions is based on the individual’s commitment and talent.
All clubs have their own unique benefits and advantages, and high school students are encouraged to try all clubs to expose themselves to as many people and subjects as possible.