By: Dalia Liu and Erin Casey
Do you like to grill? Are you a running enthusiast? Do you devote your free time to analyzing financial reports and problem-solving business-related challenges? Whether you’re a gardener or a software engineer, there’s a community on campus dedicated to your biggest passion.
As we transition back to in-person operations after over a year of virtual learning, clubs and club culture are coming back in full swing. On Aug. 28 and Sept. 12, the Council of Advisory Boards will host CAB Fair: a daylong event in which students can walk through booths on the front lawns to learn about each club. If you’re unsure about which organizations you’d like to visit, reading through the club directory is a helpful first step. Another great way to stay updated on both campuswide and club-focused events is to join Georgetown’s Campus Groups page, where organizations post details about their events. Once you find organizations you’re interested in, sign up for their emails and follow them on social media to stay updated on application dates and requirements.
Extracurricular organizations at Georgetown are a great way to meet friends, as many students will attest, but they can also seem overwhelming and stressful. Club culture can be hard to navigate as a new student, but we hope this guide addresses your most important questions. Don’t hesitate to reach out to the officers of the clubs you’re interested in for more information!
Are clubs competitive?
Chances are you’ve heard that Georgetown has a competitive and sometimes even exclusive club culture. If you’re interested in pre-professional organizations, you’ll find that some seem almost impossible to join, only accepting a small percentage of applicants. Many students experience rejection from clubs at least once. While getting denied is painful, you can always reapply to the club in the spring semester! This also means many of the club members, including the officers themselves, might not have made it in their first try. In addition, there are many more clubs that do not require applications than there are that do. Organizations on campus that are open for everybody to join provide just as much networking and just as many opportunities as closed ones, and they are just as enriching communities for members.
What if I don’t join any clubs?
You’ll be completely fine! Clubs are a great way for many students to explore their interests, but they aren’t one size fits all. Outside of joining clubs, there are a multitude of opportunities to explore your interests with both diverse and like-minded peers in the Washington, D.C. area. Getting involved at Georgetown looks different for everyone, and whether you choose to join clubs or pursue programs outside of Georgetown, you can easily find a community to develop your passions.
Do I have to apply to every club?
No, every club has its own application process and timeline. To find each organization’s application information, search for the club on Campus Groups and look through their social media pages.
How time consuming is getting involved with extracurriculars?
Your extracurricular experience is what you make of it. If you’re willing to devote a lot of time, you can get involved in more administrative roles that allow you to get more involved within the club. If you’re just looking for something to supplement your experience at Georgetown outside of your classwork, you can find roles with a lower time commitment that will still allow you to explore new activities and make connections with peers.
Are clubs a big part of campus life?
Clubs and organizations host a lot of social events on campus. They can certainly feel like a large part of your social life, but you definitely don’t have to depend on them to have a good social experience. Meeting people through clubs is just one of many, many ways to make friends. You’ll make friends through your dorm, classes, discussions, etc. Your circle of friends will most likely evolve throughout your college experience, and whether you meet them through clubs or your classes, you will find a lot of interesting people to interact with.
What are unaffiliated organizations?
Unaffiliated organizations are groups on campus that aren’t officially recognized by the university but whose members are part of the Georgetown community. These include both social and professional sororities and fraternities as well as interest-based groups like H*yas for Choice, the pro-abortion reproductive justice group advocating for improved access to sexual health resources. Unrecognized organizations don’t receive funding from the Student Activities Commision, but they still have a notable presence on campus. Joining unaffiliated organizations is not a comparative disadvantage to joining officially recognized organizations; finding the group that best fits your interests and values is the most important consideration when it comes to joining clubs.