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Faculty, staff reflect on student involvement

November 15, 2013

Mike Olszewski / The Courier

Over-involvement is not a problem at Monmouth College according to Tom Prince, Visiting Assistant Professor from the Political Economy and Commerce department. The Courier surveyed 150 students on their involvement on campus and perceived amount of free-time.

The study found that on average involved students participates in approximately four organizations. The amount of time averaged per organization was approximately four hours.

“The number you have to watch is how much time [the organization] takes up. If involvement with an organization doesn’t interfere with time spent on studying, then involvement is a good thing,” Prince said. “Fifteen hours a week on organizations is not excessive. When calculating class time, eight hours of sleep per night and the 15 hours of extracurricular, you still have an extra 85 hours a week to dedicate to other things like studying.”
In the survey for extracurricular involvement we also included work study, part-time jobs, and full time jobs. Prince believed that this was a point of distinction, since some students are required to work full or part time in order to stay in school. Prince admitted “you must eliminate something along the way if you want to be serious about your education”. This gives to reason a balance between academics, extracurricular, and social must be achieved.

The survey found that on average a student will hold approximately two positions within the organization. These positions usually require more time to hold, which was factored in the 15 hours on extracurricular per week. This can be problematic, however, if students are just taking the position to build up their resume, according to Billy Bernard, Assistant Director of Greek Life, Leadership and Involvement. “If students are not committed [to an organization], but hold positions and put it on a resume, it would be apparent to the employer when they are asked about their duties in the organization,” said Bernard.

Prince agrees and believes that the “…primary responsibility is academics. If it takes away from academics then you aren’t acting as a responsible leader of an organization. You must be able to balance properly.” However, Prince does believe that there is not an over involvement problem on campus, rather “I would like to see students get involved in something they are enthusiastic about.”

Porscha McCloud
Layout Editor

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