For many of us at Carthage College, involvement in campus organizations is a vital part of our collegiette experience. It’s a way to make new friends, stay connected with the community and build resumes. No one knows this better than Carthage senior Jenna Leazott. Her Campus sat down with Jenna—who plans on graduating this Spring with a major in political science and a minor in women and gender studies—to talk about her experiences with campus organizations and why it’s important to get involved.
Photo courtesy of Jenna Leazott
HC: What organizations have you been involved in here at Carthage?
JL: I’ve been in Model United Nations, Amnesty International, Honors Council, Pi Sigma Alpha (Political Science Honors Fraternity), Omicron Delta Kappa (Leadership Honors Fraternity), Alpha Kappa Delta (Sociology Honors Fraternity), Alpha Mu Gamma (Language Honors Fraternity), Iota Iota Iota (Women’s & Gender Studies Fraternity), and Alpha Lambda Delta (Freshman Honors Fraternity).
HC: What are the reasons that you joined these organizations?
JL: I joined them because I know one of the best ways to meet people is through organizations. I was involved in Model UN in high school—it was actually how I found Carthage!—and knew I wanted to do it again in college. I’ve always been interested in human rights and have followed Amnesty International’s actions closely, so the opportunity to become involved with them on a smaller scale was an opportunity I couldn’t pass up. Honors Council came out of my membership with the Honors Program, but it turned into something far more inclusive for the entire campus, which I’ve really enjoyed. The Honors Fraternities were a natural next step as I progressed in my academic career, and they’ve all been great resume builders as well!
HC: What kind of leadership roles, if any, have you taken on in these organizations?
JL: I am currently the president of Model United Nations and Pi Sigma Alpha, and the treasurer of Amnesty International and Honors Council. I have been the secretary of Model United Nations and Amnesty International, the Vice President of Model United Nations and Amnesty International, and the Service Chair for Honors Council. I have been on E-Board positions since my second semester of freshman year.
HC: What opportunities have these organizations given you that you would not necessarily have had without them?
JL: I’ve definitely grown in my confidence and abilities, from organization to time-management to leadership skills in general. I’ve been able to plan global trips, travel the world and lead dozens throughout Chicago and around the world.
HC: You’re about to graduate, in what ways have you grown these past four years? Can you attribute any of this to the organizations you have been a part of?
JL: I’ve definitely grown a lot more in my confidence as a leader. I had had a few leadership roles in high school but definitely didn’t understand the magnitude higher leadership positions can bring. I’m much more confident speaking and leading groups of people, and I’ve noticed I have started to take charge more often in my personal and work life. I definitely attribute most of my personal growth to the skills I’ve learned being on so many E-Boards in my time at Carthage, and cannot thank the people who showed me the ropes.
HC: If you had any advice to give to someone looking to get involved, what would you say?
JL: Join everything you’re interested in! You can always drop things you don’t have time for or aren’t interested in, but you at least won’t graduate with regrets about not at least trying to join something. Also, even if you don’t think you “fit” the bill, join! Model UN, for example, seems like a club full of political science majors. And, while a lot of us are, we’ve had virtually every major under the sun join and get amazing benefits from the club. Organizations are one of the best ways to make friends and make Carthage feel like home, so go for it!
For those looking to join an organization, but don’t know where to start, Carthage makes it easy to get involved! At the start of the Spring semester, Carthage typically hosts two big events to encourage students to branch out and meet new people! The first is an organization fair that hosts over 100 booths for student organizations to share what they’re all about. There, you can ask countless questions and sign up for the club’s mailing list. The second event involves Spring Sorority Recruitment, which is a week-long event in February for women to learn about the eight social sororities on Carthage and potentially join one!
Rep image courtesy of Jenna Leazott