Formal education only goes so far in teaching students. The values that can be earned outside of a classroom are limitless, and can be attained through involvement in extracurricular activities.

Extracurriculars are often acknowledged on a surface level, regarded mostly for their direct benefits. These can be observed almost immediately as a result of performance. 

For example, being involved in a sport allows one to remain active and diversify their resume. Though important factors, there are more deeply-rooted advantages to playing a sport.

Athletics can teach one how to effectively work with a team, prepare for an event, and problem-solve or recover in just seconds.

Of course, these benefits are not limited to sports. Theater, music, service and special-interest organizations generate similar values and allow students to expand their horizons in exceptional ways.

Activities outside of the classroom prepare students through more real-world experiences, where they must engage their own talents and even each other in order to accomplish a task.

While they are often encouraged at a high school level, interest in extracurriculars can sometimes falter as students move onto the college level. Though this issue is situational, some students fail to get involved because graduate-level schools tend to consider GPA and test scores more heavily.

Unfortunately, this mindset overlooks the merits of extracurriculars. It is simpler to put forth formulaic effort toward the next step of one’s life.

 However, the activities we engage in now will carry through the rest of our lives. They help us develop habits we would not be able to by just doing the bare minimum, and they kindle our curiosity. 

We as humans will never be done learning. It is imperative that we take it upon ourselves to seek out self-improvement and knowledge outside of the education we receive in the classroom.   

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