Amanda Nachman, CEO of College Magazine, Shares Tips for Getting Students Involved After a Year at Home
14 Oct 2021
Amanda Nachman is the CEO of College Magazine, a TEDx speaker, and the bestselling author of #Qualified: You Are More Impressive Than You Realize. Her advice has been featured by Business Insider, NBC News, Today, Good Morning America and MarketWatch. Recently, APB sat down with Amanda and asked her how campuses can move forward from pandemic teaching and learning, and get students more involved after having become accustomed to being at home. Read the interview:
Students have had a year away from on-campus involvement opportunities (for the most part). How do we energize the student body to get involved with new opportunities on campus while they pivot back to in-person learning?
Students felt a void from the inactive year. Energize your students to jump back in--both in-person and virtually--by reminding them of the benefits of getting involved in student orgs. Point out that social and leadership actions like participating in meetings, leading projects, giving back to their community, and creating events, prepares them for the real world and their future career.
How do we help support students that are still learning virtually with involvement opportunities on campus?
Virtual learning taught us that we are capable of participation in many forms. Encourage students to rise to the challenges of virtual involvement by making virtual connections. When they can't meet in person, remind them to send a message to a peer or fellow club member each day, and carve out the time to connect one-on-one virtually. Look for accountability partners, find a study buddy, or simply grab a virtual coffee.
What are some tips for student leaders to recruit new students for their organizations even though they have many in-person networking restrictions in place?
Just because you can't meet in person, doesn't mean you can't recruit new members for your organization. Get creative by taking your in-person experiences to virtual programming. For instance, turn a skit into an online Zoom performance. Match current members with new members for one-on-one connections with creative prompts. Use improv games for team building (contribute one word to create a story, name that song, etc.). Engage new members on social media by showing how your student org makes an impact.
What skills can students learn from getting more involved on campus and how can they be utilized in the real world and life after college?
80% of employees work on teams; when you get involved on campus, you're practicing essential teamwork skills. Campus orgs are a practice run for higher stakes teamwork and communications. When you gather your team for weekly meetings, recruit new members, resolve interpersonal conflicts, fund-raise, and even plan social events, you're strengthening the skills you'll use every day in the real world.
How can students better identify what involvement opportunities on campus are the right fit and will best help them to grow as individuals?
Like a hot new pair of jeans, the right fit comes from trusting your gut about your favorite style, being open to new trends, stepping in that dressing room, and seeing what looks best. Not every pair will work for you, but how can you know unless you try? When students choose a club that speaks to their interests, and then find themselves excited to participate, valued as a member, and eager to take on challenges, they're taking their style to the next level.