History of Extracurricular Activities

On college campuses, extracurricular activities are the main involvement of personal student development. A student participating in an extracurricular activity plays an important role in collegiate experience. The purpose for the student participating in these activities helps them not only with social, entertainment, and enjoyment devotions but it helps them improve their abilities. Colleges want to meet these standards, to help the student develop. The impact of these activities certainly impacts the students and helps them negotiate, communicate, manage conflict and help lead others.

Participating in activities outside of the classroom is beneficial to the students; they learn about time management, academic and mental capability. Involvement in student activities, helps students mature socially, and helps relationships form too. Being in a setting with different groups of individuals allow us to gain more self-assurance, and help us share the same interest or to differ.

History of Extracurricular Activities

The history of extracurricular activities, started in the 19th century, they were apart of the normal academic schedule.

“ When the students were finished they had planted beside the curriculum an extra-curriculum of such dimensions that in time there would develop generations of college students”. (Rudolph, 1990, p.137) This is important because this was the beginning to something new that helped change students. The first mechanism that made its way into the American college was the debating club or literary society. Yale undergrads established two different competing societies, Linonian and Brothers. At Princeton they were called American Whig and Cliosophic. In 1770 Harvard’s clubs were part of the American Institute the literary societies were often responsible for founding college literary magazines, which were another agency of intellect in colleges.

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The societies and their libraries, the clubs, journals, and organizations, which balanced for the neglect of science, English literature, history, music and art. This helped the student response to the classical course study. It brought status of the mind, and helped the American campus.

The undergrads wanted to redefine the American college; their purpose was to change the focus. They implemented the Greek-letter fraternity movement the parent chapters were found in the 1820’s and 1830’s. The founders of those chapters opened more such as Kappa Alpha in 1825, Theta Delta Chi in 1847, including four national fraternities, Sigma Phi, Delta Phi, Chi Psi, and Psi Upsilon. These frats started migrating to cities, and the new chapters were created from grad members who attended law and medical school.

Once the fraternities were introduced the literary societies began to decline. Within the extracurricular activities these fraternities were only for men at the time, and these groups formed loyalty and a bond. The Greek- letter fraternity filled an emotional and social rather than a curricular space. The Greek life did more for the students and helps them mature and focus on community efforts, and serve a further purpose.

Today in Extracurricular Activities

The activities are social organizations, governance organizations, and intercollegiate athletic programs. These programs allow students to work with one another. The most common activities found on campuses are, student government, athletics, academic and professional organizations, volunteer and service related activities, multicultural activities, arts, and other activities. Students who are involved in governance organizations such as student government and residence hall government are elected by peers to be the voice of the students to the university administration. These positions give the students a sense of responsibility, and allow students to build connections, that can be essential in the near future for jobs. Student government operations contain allocating funds to other organizations, planning programs related to student interest, and helps build a successful campus community. Athletics is commonly well known in universities and colleges in the United States, from intramural and intercollegiate. Requires a lot of commitment, of time, practice, and competing.

Intramural sports give opportunities to non-varsity student athletes to enjoy and play the sport, while competing against friends. The academic and professional organizations prepare you for the job. They learn about job related fields, and what skills to you need to become successful. Volunteer and Service is mainly the community service aspect and this help you build connections with other people while serving a greater purpose by helping the local community, and other communities worldwide. Multicultural activities help raise awareness, and understand diverse cultures, ethnic, and racial backgrounds. The art activities included plays, musicals, and dance concerts and students get to demonstrate their talent. Some universities have marching bands, orchestra, and singing groups. Other activities they can have on campuses are honorary organizations, for students who maintain a certain academic grade point average.


There are different activities on college campuses, and all of them promote some a social importance, and they all function for the student to be involved and develop a culture. The activities build self-esteem, students feels more connected to their peers, and By participating in extracurricular activities, they will find something they enjoy and see how they can use that as a career. Participating in certain extracurricular activities having to do with the field that the student is interested in could help them find a job. Extracurricular activities are a part of students every day life. They play important roles in student’s lives. They have positive effects on student’s lives by improving behavior, school performance, school completion, positive aspects to make successful adults, and social aspects.

Cite this page

History of Extracurricular Activities. (2016, May 19). Retrieved from http://studymoose.com/history-of-extracurricular-activities-essay

History of Extracurricular Activities
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