Why Community And Giving Back To The Community Important
Entering college as a freshman is an experience you’d cherish, or so you hope. As exciting as it can be, colleges entail mounts of pressure and the assignments keep on piling up. To make things worse, it becomes almost natural to feel demotivated and glum, especially with no one to cheer you up.
In this age of constant gratification, being part of a community has become essential for our betterment. We impress upon the ideas of maintaining relationships between closed ones, or create new ones with people we feel connected with. It has become almost a psychological need to harbour the feeling of belongingness, which ultimately contribute to developing a sense of competence and even compassion within ourselves. We feel competent enough to pursue a given task and this boost of self-esteem is integral to the successful completion of our duties. Furthermore, we feel compassionate towards others by interacting with them and this sense of empathy is equally important for our spiritual growth and success.
The Benefits of Community for College Students and why is giving back to the community important
We feel naturally driven when we are given an environment that promotes safety, autonomy, unity and competency. These fundamental attributes produce greater human motivation and therefore, simultaneously boosts up our cognitive functionality. Thus, through a community, we feel more inclined to better at our academic institutions and work harder with the support of others. There are a few traits of communities that will help the psychological needs for a student in a college:
Creating Supportive and Respectful Relationships
The Dean of Student Life at Concordia College once remarked that the greatest memory that their students leave with are those captured through their communities, stating ‘What stands out for them (the students) is the kind of community and experience they had here. When they return to campus, they feel like they are coming home.” Therefore, communities breed supportive relationships and these relationships are the ones that last possibly decades, even after you graduate. Feelings of vulnerability, uncomfortableness or incompetency are easily alleviated when you have a group of friends beside you who constantly remind you of your adequacy. Furthermore, if such communities are built within the classroom as well, you do develop a greater sense of respect towards both your teacher and your peers, resulting in higher academic performance and improved social skills.
2. Development of Personal and Humane Values
Communities also bring about the best in you, where associating and befriending people who hold better moral values and present qualities of proper behaviour and etiquette results in you developing the same set of values. Through interacting with a diverse group of people, you grow to have more compassion and understanding for different ethnicities and people from other walks of life, which leads to you becoming more open-minded and being greatly concerned for others as well. Such a development in your character will prove integral in how you communicate and interact with the world later on in life, ensuring that you become a respectable and compassionate person.
By maintaining relationships with people from diverse backgrounds and even nationalities, you nurture the skill of communication and collaboration. You would be putting yourself in situations unfamiliar to you and while this may seem initially uncomfortable if you’re someone who’s inherently reclusive, it does bring you the opportunity to challenge yourself and open yourself up for new ideas and interactions. Community engagement is crucial, but it is important primarily because of how much it contributes to our personal and mental betterment.
How to Build Community Connections
While there are many places that a student can create a community, be it through community clubs and societies or through small meet-ups between a few selected people after class. However, for those wishing to be more involved and have greater community engagement through areas outside college campus, these are the few ways you can achieve that:
Students may opt to participate in something that not only brings mental satisfaction to themselves but also helps improve the welfare of their local communities as well. With the plethora of community service centres and volunteering organisations, you can choose to do something that goes along with your line of interest, with the likes of environment cleaning services, providing food for the homeless, working at a dog shelter and so on.
Some of us might find it a painful ordeal to actually meet someone on a face-to-face basis. In this age of digitalisation, we feel more at comfort with talking to people through social media and other networks that do not require a physical interaction. There are a number of student engagement platforms on the internet itself which promotes college students with similar interests to partner up and talk with each other over what they like and such. Through such communication methods, you might even get a friend who’ll last you a lifetime, if you’re lucky.
There have been numerous researches which prove that having a community and why is giving back to the community important while in college greatly influences the performance of students in their academic as well as personal life. This particular feeling of belonging to a greater cause or having a group of people who genuinely care about you is the best method of positive reinforcement available to students.
With the prevalence of depression and anxiety within college students, the need for a community has become even more crucial. Thus, it has now become even the university’s responsibility to look after the mental welfare of their students, where student affair administrators are required to promote community activities and student engagement on campus. Faculties have also been administered to pay heed to their students needs. Governing bodies are also required to provide better environments for communication and student engagement while clubs and societies have become the common space for developing positive relationships.
Therefore, through such importance of community engagement and involvement given out by colleges, there remains no sliver of doubt that having a community and maintaining community activities is integral for the growth and learning of students.
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