You Should Be a Student Leader and Here’s Why

From Annems Leadership.

Because it is a game of relationships, trust and commitment, the world of student orgs can be both a thrill and a mess. And people always wonder why we (yes, I am a former student leader) have put ourselves into this chaotic situtation. Well, there are fair-enough reasons why we do this, and this is a list of some of those reasons. I hope this answers your questions.

1) Awkward? Not Anymore.

Student leadrship is all about two things: people and influence. It will teach you something that doesn’t always appear in the school curricula. It’s called social intelligence  the ability to get along well with others, and to get others to cooperate with you. In whatever situation you find yourself in, whether you’re at the boss’ desk of a great corporation, or attending a humble garden wedding party, you can never go wrong with good social skills.

2) Conquering responsibili-phobia

Responsibilities, yes, can be really dreadful. A lot of young people has the fear of being pressured of duties and work. But when else should we start learning how to work under pressure? When we start to actually work? Nah. Student leadership gives you enough practice of handling actual, real-life responsibilities. The world of real jobs and real professionals could be hostile and unforgiving, and if you don’t have enough proper exercise on the drills of the real world, well, good luck.

3) You can be legen–wait for it–dary.

You will get to experience the things that an ordinary student wouldn’t get to experience. You will be able to listen to (or meet) people that only a few would be able to encounter. You can get to places, learn new things, and achieve heights that would eventually be great stories to tell your children and grandchildren. Never does a person become boring when he is a student leader. Mark my word.

4) Tell me who your friends are and I’ll tell you why you’re awesome

Being a student leader gives you access to this smart, interesting, passionate, goal-oriented and potentially successful group of young individuals. It is a blessing to be surrounded by these positive influences that can motivate you to reach your full potentials and be a better person. A little reminder of what they all say: “You become the average of the five people you spend the most time with.” So choose your community wisely.

5) You will have that handsome resume

Doesn’t it feel good when you can actually put in your fresh-grad resume the words: “Accomplished and active student leader“? These days, employers do not just look at how good you are inside the classroom. They look at what you did in college as a whole, including your engagements and outside experiences. If you’re lucky enough, these employers would’ve been former student leaders themselves, so you’ll have that easy extra point against the other applicants in the room.

6) Office rockstar in-the-making

A great majority of college grads get into business workplaces as their starting point. In student organizations, it is a must that you know the difference between a letter and a memo and when to use them. These little pieces of knowledge you learn while inside a student org can always be applied to any office setting, so that when your supervisor asks you where you learned how to use the paper-cutter, you say, “in my college org.” Now that’s pretty awesome.

7) Firm, fighting, and honorable

This is where the deep side of student leadership comes in. Having a piece of influence among students means that you have to learn how to fight for them. There are times when you will be troubled or afraid or overwhelmed by shit around you. But I tell you, dear leaders: you always have to take a stand, and fight for it. A leader without conviction of what they believe is right cannot be a leader in the first place.

8) Being addicted to feedback

Student leadership is still politics, but it’s politics in its less harsh form. People often criticize student leaders as dominant, ambitious, elitists, and fake. Student leaders are easy targets.  A good way to handle criticism is to consciously distinguish each of them according to their purpose: constructive or destructive. Ignore all the destructive criticism and focus on the constructive. Feedback allows you to grow, to improve, and eventually, you’ll be addicted to feedback that you would ask for it all the time.

9) Experiencing the real world before getting there

To summarize everything, being a student leader provides a glimpse of what’s out there. It allows you to discover what you can do and develop what you’re good at. Leadership enhances your perspectives on people and things. It opens doors–and not just simple doors–but enormous doors of opportunities. It allows you to make mistakes and learn from them. Ultimately, student leadership strenghtens you.