If there's one tip I have for students at the U (and especially design students), it's gotta be to GET INVOLVED. Interpret that however you want, but act on it! I promise, you won't regret it. Student involvement is huge for so many reasons. For one thing, it connects you to your peers so you have more than academics to relate to. The University has hundreds of student groups (and I swear I'm not exaggerating). It could be anything from a People Watching Club to Minnesota Medical Leaders and then of course, all of the groups in between.
I've tried my hand at a few student groups through my years at the U. I was in a few bi-partisan, political groups my freshman year. I helped to found the TOMS Campus Club (yes, the shoes). And this year I'm really getting into design related organizations. The two that I've joined are the Interior Design Student Association (IDSA) and Alpha Rho Chi (APX). Let me tell you a bit about each....
So IDSA is a student group by interior design students and for interior design students. We strive to connect students and peers with eachother as well as with professionals in the field. Things have changed a lot over the past years, and so far it's been a total revamping process. Things are going well so far and I'm really happy to be a board member. We have a mentor/mentee program, we'll host networking events and tours, as well as other fun events each month.
APX is one that I'm still pretty new to. I attended their kick-off meeting last week, and I'm pretty pumped to get involved with them. They have similar goals to IDSA, but they are a more over-arching organization as far as design disciplines go. Way back when, this was exlusively a professional fraternity for architecture students. Now though, it's focus is on all design and design related discipines. It's a really awesome way to get in touch with students studying to become architects, graphic designers, engineers, etc. When you think about it, these are because I could be working with in the future!
I'll keep you posted on how these groups are going throughout the year. I'm really excited for all of the awesomeness to come!
Until next time,