Extracurricular activities can help you excel in your career, as they will provide you with relevant soft and hard skills. Besides, it is a great opportunity to discover what interests you the most. Remember that trip to Thailand that you were dreaming about? Well, it might be the right time to buy the ticket. You have just to learn how to put your extracurricular activity on your CV to make it shine. Keep on reading, we have plenty of tips for you.
What are Extracurricular Activities?
The term “extracurricular activities” refers to those activities you engage with that are not required for university or employment. Chess clubs, photography or experiences abroad are just a few examples. The goal of extracurricular activities is to gain valuable skills for your professional or personal life.
How Extracurricular Activities Can Help Students
Life is not only about tests and grades. Extracurricular activities can help you develop soft skills while exploring new career paths you might be interested in pursuing. Furthermore, by engaging with extracurricular activities, you will live experiences that will make you grow as a person.
At the same time, you will have the chance to meet like-minded individuals you share interests with. This will be highly beneficial for your career as it will allow you to grow your network.
Which Extracurricular Activities You Should Choose
From sports to chess, there are thousands of activities to choose from. The only thing we recommend you is to choose something that you are interested in. Forget for a moment what would look better on a resume. We will see later on how you can make your extracurricular activities shine.
Think about some new skills that you would like to acquire or experiences you want to try. For example, if you like to take photos, you can join a photography club. Only with practice, you will discover what you really love. If you find out that it’s not your cup of tea, no problem, you can always try something else.
Another thing you should bear in mind is to have a balance between your extracurricular activities, academic and personal life. You might be tempted to fill all your free time with extracurricular activities to impress potential employers. However, remember that you are doing it first and foremost for yourself. Hence, give yourself a break, enjoy your time with your friends and family or doing nothing.
Where to Put Extracurricular Activities on Your Resume
As you have seen at the beginning of ‘How Extracurricular Activities Can Help You Excel in Your Career’, non-academic activities can increase your chances to get hired. This is particularly important when you have little working experience. It will help you show possible employers why you would be a great fit for their company.
Treat your extracurricular activities with the same attention you will reserve to your education or working section. If you wish, you can create a separate section for your extracurricular activities. Specify which transferable skills you have learned during that experience. Make sure you highlight any achievement you have accomplished that could fit the company’s value and mission.
For example, if you want to apply for a position as a social media manager and you are passionate about photography, highlight it in your CV. Make sure to highlight any contests or exhibitions you have participated in. Or, if you have a dedicated social media account, put the link in your CV to showcase your ability. You can check on Indeed for other tips on how to put extracurricular activities on your resume.
What Extracurricular Activities do Employers Look For?
Employers do not require a specific extracurricular activity, rather they are looking for a candidate with the right set of soft skills. Below you will find some examples, so you can learn how to better stress your experience with future employers.
Studying in a foreign country is a life-changing experience. We have already talked about it in 10 Best Countries to Study Abroad for International Students. During your experience abroad, you will likely develop cultural awareness and your ability to adapt to changes, all qualities highly valued by employers. Moreover, if you have learned or enhanced a foreign language during this period, make sure to stress it! It will show your communication skills and willingness to learn new skills.
Volunteering and Activism
At BEBS, we often talk about making a long-lasting positive impact on society. It is part of our values and we have written a few articles on the role companies play. We also know that now more than ever, organizations look positively at people who want to contribute to society. There is no better way to show your commitment to society than being involved in volunteering or activism activities.
If you like to be surrounded by your peers, you might want to join student associations or clubs. You will enhance your teamwork and organizational skills. Furthermore, depending on your availability, you could opt to take on more responsibility. If you do it, you can write it in your resume to show your leadership skills.
Blog and social media channels
Do you have a blog or do you run a project on social media? Do you think it could be relevant for the position you are applying for? Well, then you have to put it in your resume. It will show that you have initiative and you are truly passionate about a topic. Plus, it could be a great opportunity to showcase to potential employers your communication skills.
Creative hobbies like photography or video-making are an excellent opportunity to display your capacity to think outside of the box. Additionally, you will gain some technical skills that could be transferable to the workplace. For example, if you would like to work with social media, you could benefit from some basic graphic design skills.
How Can Extracurricular Activities Help You Excel in Your Career?
Focusing on something else that is not required by your studies will have a positive impact on your professional future. It will develop your personality and it will help you find your true passion. This, in turn, will allow you to become a better professional ready to start a brilliant career.
Join the conversation on our social media channels and let us know which extracurricular activity interests you the most!