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In many high schools, there are a wide variety of clubs and activities available for students to join. Clubs and activities are a great way to find where you belong in your high school social community and to find your niche among students with similar interests and goals. You’ll be able to meet new people and teachers, and you’ll really feel like you’re involved in campus life.

 

In addition, high school extracurriculars allow you to pursue your current interests and passions and perhaps even find ones you didn’t know you had. Thus, when you’re looking for clubs to join, try to pursue a mix of activities that you are familiar with and ones that may be out of your comfort zone. You’ll have plenty of time throughout high school to narrow down which ones are best for you.

 

Regardless of which activities you join, it is important to get involved in your high school community for the sake of your college applications. Colleges want to see that their students were well-rounded and were able to handle multiple responsibilities at once throughout high school, and extracurricular involvement is a sure sign of both.

 

If you’re a freshman in high school unsure of which clubs and activities you should join, here’s a comprehensive list of some great organizations for you to get involved in in high school. Go through the list and see which clubs are represented at your school. Then, go through it again and see which activities you may want to join.

 

Subject-Area Clubs

1.History Club: This is a club where you can analyze and present historic artistic masterpieces and hold discussions on the subject of art history. You may also get to discuss and practice techniques that art historians use to preserve valuable pieces of art. Some art history clubs take field trips to local museums and even plan international trips to artistic hubs like the Louvre, the Vatican, and Istanbul.

 

2. Photography Club: If you’re interested in snapping photos or if you have a fancy camera that you don’t know how to use, photography club is for you. You could discuss with fellow team members how to take a great photo and possibly analyze famous photos. You could also get access to a dark room where you can expertly develop the photos you take.

 

3. Sculpture Club: If you’re interested in forming art from clay, stone, and other molds, sculpture club could be for you. You could learn how to create great sculptures and the different methods with which you could do it. You’ll probably get to create a work of art of your own and display it in a competition or presentation. This club may also take trips to local art museums or even to international destinations to see historically renowned sculptures in person.

 

4. Art Review Magazine: This is a great way for students to combine interests in both art and journalism. If you know how to critically discuss renowned pieces of art and put it into an elegant article, this is the club for you. This activity could give you the opportunity to to say that you are a published writer and art critic on your college applications!

 

5. Drama Club: This is the club for all of you theatre enthusiasts. If you want the opportunity to act and practice your interpretation skills with a group, this is the club to join. You may get to audition for and star in plays for your school and perhaps even participate in acting competitions.

 

6. Improv Club: Those who do improv and participate in improv performances and competitions say it is one of the most fun activities they do. By joining this club, you’ll learn how to think on your feet and become comfortable with presenting in front of an audience. Some improv clubs do performances and even put on competitions.

 

7. Film Club: This is the club for people who love to watch movies and for those who want to become a director or be a part of the film industry one day. Through film club, you may get to watch great films, but you’ll also have the opportunity to create your own film productions with a group of people. You may even get to showcase your work at film festivals or local presentations.

 

8. Science Olympiad: If you know that you want to go into a science-related field or if science really interests you, consider putting your knowledge into a competition with science olympiad. As a freshman, you may not have all the science background that you need through your classes, but this club will be a great way for you to pick up some material and get ahead in your science classes. Many science olympiad teams compete in science olympiad tournaments on weekends.

 

9. Speech and Debate Club: If you want to get good at public speaking, reporting on current events, and making effective arguments, speech and debate is the club for you. Through speech and debate, you’ll have the opportunity to compete locally, regionally, and nationally in a variety of events that span from acting to intense 45-minutes debates. Those who do speech and debate really do fall in love with it and are often found in suits competing at tournaments on weekends.

 

10. Mathletes: If math, statistics, or numbers in general spark your interest, consider doing it competitively by joining Mathletes. As a freshman, you may not have all the knowledge that you need to be competitive, but the club will be a great way for you to get ahead in your math classes and possibly compete with a team once you’re ready.

 

11. History Club: If you’re a history buff, consider joining a club dedicated to it. Through history clubs, you’ll get to learn about and discuss important historical eras and events. You may also be able to hear from various historians and other professionals that use history in their work. Perhaps you may even get to take trips down to famous historical sites so you can visualize historical moments in their entirety.

 

12. French/Spanish/Foreign Language Club: Every high school student is required to learn a foreign language, and what better way to get better at a foreign language than to immerse yourself in it through a club. Depending on which foreign language club you are joining, the activities may vary. In general, however, you’ll find that most club meetings will be conducted almost completely in the foreign language, and you’ll have various events that celebrate the culture that is attached to that language.

 

13. Gay-Straight Alliance Clubs: It’s important that students, no matter what their sexual orientation, feel valued at their school. The Gay-Straight Alliance club is meant to provide a safe environment for LGBTQ individuals and their straight allies. You should consider joining no matter what you identify as.  

 

14. Yearbook Club: If Yearbook is offered as a club in high school, you ought to consider joining in order to be a part of a very special high school tradition. As a member of the yearbook club, you would document your fellow students doing amazing things throughout the year, and your reports would be put in print for the entire school to see. This is definitely an organization that’ll give you something amazing to show for your efforts.

 

15. Academic Decathlon: Academic Decathlons are competitions where students are tested on a variety of academic subjects via multiple choice tests, performance events, and an essay. You get to work in a team, and you can compete no matter what your grades and GPA are. There are different levels for all types of students.

 

Hobby Clubs

16. Chess Club: Chess is a complicated game that requires strategy, careful thinking, and overall practice. By joining chess club, you’ll have the opportunity to learn new strategies to beat your opponent and practice playing against other students, giving you a fun challenge. You may even get to participate in chess competitions.

 

17. Anime Club: For you Japanese anime fanatics, here is your opportunity to share your fandom with your classmates. With this club, you’ll be able to watch all of your famous anime shows and movies, learn to speak some Japanese, perhaps attend some anime conventions as a group, and maybe even draw out some anime characters and scripts yourself!

 

18. Video Games Club: If playing video games is your favorite pastime, a video games club may be perfect for you. Not only will you have the opportunity to play the games you love, but you may get to play on the competitive level and learn about how you can make a career out of your passion.

 

19. Political Affiliation Clubs: Regardless of your political affiliation, there may be a club for you to join and express your political interests. This can take the form of a Young Democrats, Young Republicans Club, or even an Independents Club. Through these clubs, you will get to engage in some interesting political discourse, find ways to support your party, and perhaps do some lobbying with your local government officials to get certain pieces of legislation passed for your party of choice.

 

20. Religion Clubs: If your religious faith is very important to you, and you would like to get acquainted with other individuals who share your beliefs, consider joining a religiously affiliated club at your school. You can join a religious club if you do not practice a certain religion but simply want to learn more about a particular religion as well. Through this club, you will be able to engage in sophisticated discussions about the religion and certain texts and also participate in school-held religious festivals, celebrations, and rituals with the club.

 

21. Outdoors Club: Sitting inside a high school building for 8 hours a day can be exhausting. Put some adventure into your high school career by joining a club that focuses on outdoor activities. This could include hiking, skiing, canoeing, you name it! You’ll get to engage in some great outdoor physical activities with some great classmates who share the same sense of adventure.

 

22. Book Club: If you enjoy reading and want to make sure that the hustle and bustle of a busy high school schedule doesn’t prevent you from engaging with good literature, join a book club at your school. Book clubs are great for getting great book suggestions and keeping you accountable for keeping up with your reading. You’ll be able to engage in critical discussions of each book, allowing you to share your thoughts with other like-minded classmates.

 

23. Creative Writing Club: Want to write short stories, novels, be the next J.K. Rowling? A creative writing club is a good place for you to start. By joining this club, you’ll find that your writing skills really improve as you will be able to practice writing constantly and receive helpful feedback from your peers.

 

24. Student Government: If you really want to be involved in your high school community and plan important events like dances, pep rallies, etc, consider running for student government (also known as student council in some schools). As a freshman, you’ll probably be in charge of planning and executing events related to your class, giving you some great project management experience and allowing you to become very connected with your fellow classmates.

 

25. Robotics Club: Robotics professionals are in high-demand in today’s tech companies, where machine learning and artificial intelligence are hot topics. It’s worth joining a robotics club to see if you can discover your passion in this field because it could set you up for a lucrative career in the future.

 

26. Quiz Bowl: Quiz Bowl is a competition that tests players on a wide variety of academic subjects.This would be a great club to join if you want to use some of the information you learn in your classes in a competitive setting, if you are a trivia buff, or if you are really good at memorizing facts.

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Community Service/Charity Clubs

27. Amnesty International Club: Amnesty International is a worldwide human rights organization that works to combat various human rights violations all over the world. As a high school student, you can join a local amnesty international chapter, which will discuss certain human rights issues in the club, participate in any way they can in local amnesty international efforts, garner supporters and volunteers in their community for Amnesty International efforts, and raise money for the organization through various fundraisers.

 

28. Habitat For Humanity: By joining habitat for humanity, you’d get to get your hands dirty for a good cause. Members of habitat for humanity build houses for those in need. If you’re not inclined to do a bunch of hard physical labor like laying foundation and drywall, no worries! You can volunteer by painting the finished houses or doing some other light tasks. Anyone can participate!

 

29. Key Club: Key club is one of the biggest high school charity organizations in the country. By joining the Key Club chapter at your high school, you’ll get to engage in various volunteering and charity events in your school and local community. You’ll usually have a minimum requirement of hours every semester to fulfill, and you’ll get to meet new people and give back to your community in the process.

 

30. Red Cross: If your school has a local Red Cross chapter, you should consider joining in order to support a company that helps those in need all over the world. You will most likely be volunteering with your local Red Cross team and hosting fundraisers to raise money for this organization.

 

31. Operation Smile Club: Operation Smile is an organization that provides free surgeries to children born with cleft lips. By joining the Operation Smile Club at your school, you could raise awareness for Operation Smile and its efforts, host fundraisers to raise money for the organization, and even engage with a child who was helped by this organization.

 

32. Breast Cancer Awareness Club: Breast cancer awareness efforts have really mobilized well in the last few years, and high school is your chance to get involved. You could help plan a walk to cure breast cancer in your local community, host a fundraiser to go towards breast cancer research, and even talk to breast cancer survivors who were helped by your efforts.

 

33. Save Endangered Species Club: If you want to help animals through your volunteer work, you can consider joining this activity. Through this club, you can help raise awareness about endangered species and some of the human activities that may be causing these animals to be endangered, host a fundraiser to donate money to the World Wildlife Fund, and visit a wildlife rescue center.

 

34. Hospital Volunteer Club: Some high schools offer students the opportunity to go to a local hospital and help out wherever they can. You may not engage in the most glorious tasks at the hospital (you’ll probably be doing paperwork or other busy work), but you can rest assured knowing that your efforts helped a hospital save lives.

 

35. Soup Kitchen Volunteer Club: Some high schools offer students the opportunity to volunteer at their local food bank or soup kitchen. These places gather and donate food for the needy. You would be donating just a few hours at a time and feeding so many people who truly need it. It’s a truly worthwhile cause.

 

36. UNICEF: High school clubs partner with UNICEF USA to educate, advocate, and fundraise. The efforts of high school clubs help UNICEF to save children in 190 countries and territories around the globe.

 

37. Environment Club: If saving Mother Earth is something you’re passionate about, consider joining an environment club, where you will get to engage in various projects to help clean up and green up your local community. For example, you may get to plan and engage in water conservation projects, cleaning up beaches, starting a recycling initiative at your school, etc.

 

38. Recycling Club: The students in recycling clubs are the ones who make sure that your high school is being eco-friendly in its classrooms. These students establish the school-wide recycling initiative by delivering the bins to each classroom, and they usually come by on a weekly basis to pick up the recycling bins and deposit the materials in the appropriate location to be recycled.

 

39. Tutoring Club: You don’t have to go out into your community to make a difference. You can help students at your school by tutoring them in subjects that you are doing well in! If you have a knack for certain subjects and enjoy explaining concepts to others, this is the community service club for you.

 

40. PALS: This club is a great idea for anyone who loves working with kids and wants to be a positive influence on their generation. Students who join PALS get to visit kids at an elementary or middle school, where they are each paired with a younger student called their “Pal”. You get to meet with your Pal throughout the year and do some fun activities with them to make their day better. Overall, it’s a wholesome activity for responsible kids and teens.

 

 

Career Interest Clubs

41. Future Business Leaders of America: For all you students who are set on the corporate world, join FBLA to get a head start on your career. FBLA is the largest career student business organization in the world. It helps students develop the skills they need to succeed in the workplace.

 

42. Computer Science Club: Computer Science is a high-demand career nowadays, and it tends to pay very well if you work for the big tech companies. Thus, it is worth trying out a computer science club in high school to learn some coding and seeing if this incredibly lucrative field is something you would be interested in. You’ll get to develop complex programs and perhaps even enter competitions and see what your other classmates have built.

 

43. Future Scientists/STEM club: If you think your future may involve you getting involved with scientific research, consider joining the club that prepares you for that. You’ll be able to participate in science fairs, learn about the most groundbreaking studies in various fields, and possibly network with various scientists working in actual labs.

 

44. Future Medical Professionals Club: If you think you want to be a doctor, join this club and make sure that it is the right path for you. Medical school and 7-year med programs are extremely competitive, and this club will help you learn about the field and garner some resources to help you pursue a medical career.

 

45. Model United Nations: This is an activity in which students can learn about diplomacy, international relations, and the United Nations. MUN involves and teaches participants researching, public speaking, debating, and writing skills.

 

46. Mock Trial: Mock Trial is an activity where you get to be a part of a team that simulates an actual lower-court trial. Students participate in rehearsed trials to learn about the legal system in a competitive manner. Your role in Mock Trial depends on what part of the trial you are acting out, and you’ll get to compete on a local and possibly regional level.

 

47. DECA: DECA prepares emerging leaders in entrepreneurship, marketing, finance, and hospitality and management for careers around the globe. High school chapters get to participate in local, regional, and national competitions through their club chapter.

 

48. FFA: The National FFA Organization focuses on educating students in agricultural studies. It was created to help high school students learn about agriculture, and it provides the opportunity for students interested in going into farming to learn valuable techniques, attend conventions, and compete in various events relating to agriculture.

 

49. Investment Club: Investment clubs provide you an opportunity to learn about the stock market, the bonds market, and other ways you can invest funds to make money. You get to learn how to evaluate a market in order to make strategic investments and maximize your return on investment. You’ll also get to network with investment bankers and other industry professionals who can tell you how to make a fortune by doing this as a career.

 

50. Technology Students Association: The Technology Student Association (TSA) is an international student organization created to develop skills in STEM and business education. By joining, you would be able to develop skills that you will need in the workplace and participate in local, regional, and national competitions with other TSA students on your age level.

 

For More Information

Want to know more about high school clubs? Check out these previous blog posts:

 

30 High School Clubs You Can Start Now

How to Become President of Your High School Club

How to Plan and Execute an Effective Fundraiser For High School Extracurriculars

A Guide to Extracurricular Activities for Grade 9

 

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Sadhvi Mathur

Sadhvi Mathur

Senior Blogger at CollegeVine
Sadhvi is a sophomore at the University of California, Berkeley, double majoring in Business Administration and Media Studies. Having applied to over 8 universities, each with different application platforms and requirements, she is eager to share her knowledge now that her application process is over. Other than writing, Sadhvi's interests include dancing, playing the piano, and trying not to burn her apartment down when she cooks!
Sadhvi Mathur