Author Louise Blavet is a graduate from Tufts University in International Relations with a minor in Entrepreneurial Leadership, and is interning this summer at Wiggio.
Are you one of those really busy students with many leadership positions? Do you find the first few weeks of college hectic as you try to balance classes, club meetings, sports, and partying with your friends?
What Wiggio recommends: use your summer to plan ahead!
Summer days are usually spent hanging out with family and friends, traveling, working, reading, sleeping, and/or tanning. Spending a couple minutes out of your vast days to think ahead and plan for the fall can be vital in alleviating some of the pressures you get during that first week of school. Here are a few tips that can help you plan for your organization’s successful fall semester roll-out.
1. Determine your tools for success: Whether you plan to start a new campus organization or lead the club you have been presiding for three years, it’s important to identify your organization’s needs, goals and objectives for the fall. Once you’ve understood what you want accomplished by the end of the summer, you will more easily know what events and meeting topics you will want to implement. The earlier you do this, the better. As a leader, having this vision will not only help you plan relevant content, it will help communicate your mission more eloquently and motivate others to follow.
2. Bureaucratic stuff: Check your college’s Student Activities Center, to make sure your organization has fulfilled all the paperwork, funding requests, and workshop sign-ups to ensure your existence on campus. You also might want to make sure you have an awesome classroom reserved for your weekly meetings.
3. Recruitment Planning: Want to impress incoming freshmen and lure upperclassmen? Instead of putting together last minute unappealing word.doc posters, and chalking your campus grounds before a rainy day, start thinking about what makes your organization different or unique, what it has to offer, and how students can benefit from being a member to develop a recruitment strategy that works.
4. Expand your Network! You’re still in college, so you might not know how important networking is. However, if you want to push your organization to the next level, explore opportunities to partner with other student organizations, or find faculty members for mentorship and development.
5. Calendar Planning. It’s probably the most helpful tool you could ever use, so use and share that Wiggio calendar! Take the time to plan all your fall semester events, meetings, socials, etc. in a coherent manner. In your planning, also mark your school’s important days (Homecoming, midterms, days off…) to avoid planning events during these conflict times. Make sure that all events are dispersed throughout the semester, giving realistic times to prepare for them.
6. Stay in touch. Few students are thinking about school over the summer. Perhaps you don’t need to reach out to your general members, but it’s important that they know they can reach you anytime. Also, keeping your executive members involved will reduce some of their fall semester responsibilities.
7. KEEP IT FUN Students join campus organizations primarily because they seek a social environment that offers friendship, support and understanding. Collaborating together doesn’t always mean serious business, so when you’re brainstorming ideas for events, meetings, marketing strategies, make sure you keep it fun!