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High school extracurricular activities

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  • Colleges are flexible when evaluating student involvement in extracurricular activities. Students who are unaware of this flexibility may mistakenly over-optimize their profile of extra-curricular activities for what they believe colleges are looking for, at the expense of personal growth, fun, and value contributed. Or, to put it bluntly, they may spend hours on activities that are boring, teach them nothing, and contribute no lasting value to society, but with no payoff in terms of college admissions.
  • There is a wide range of extracurricular activities that people may not think of as extracurricular activities, but that are good from a wide variety of perspectives: they enable long-term personal growth and learning, they can be used to signal quality to colleges, they can be fun, and they contribute value to the world.
  • Participating in online communities may be one overlooked category in extracurricular activities, and you should seriously consider such participation if the type of activity you are interested in is amenable to that.
  • The key ingredient in using an extracurricular as a signal of quality to colleges is how convincingly you can demonstrate your passion for, and in some cases and achievement in the area.

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