Every student has been told that upon entering college, they must be prepared to be well-rounded, get involved in organizations on campus and start creating a network of connections with whom they can keep in touch during their future professional lives.
It’s all true.
According to a 2013 study by the Journal of College Student Development, student learning is increased when there is more involvement in both academic and social aspects of the collegiate experience,” and students tend to have higher rates of success when they are participating actively in student organizations.
However, UMKC students needn’t worry because this campus happens to be booming with easily accessible outlets that facilitate campus involvement. There’s something for everyone, and this quick overview will direct students to the right places to allow those social aspects of life to start developing.
Roo Groups is an online resource that allows students to browse organizations on campus at https://roogroups.collegiatelink.net/organizations.
In addition, students can stop by the Office of Student Involvement in Suite #320 of the Student Union or visit them online at http://www.umkc.edu/getinvolved or Facebook.
Here’s a small sampling of just a few of the organizations UMKC has to offer:
K-ROO Student Radio
Station Manager Cedric Hurtt encourages new members to participate in K-ROO, the student-operated online radio station whose mission is to enrich the campus and community with quality information and entertainment.
“K-ROO has a really good environment with really cool people,” Hurtt said. “And the hands-on experience you get from working here really goes a long way.”
Now a senior, Hurtt is working on building his résumé.
“I realized last year that it’s important to get involved in school, and I don’t feel like I can get this opportunity at any other school,” Hurtt said. “I feel like I came to the right school at the right time to get this experience. K-ROO’s going to have a lot of fun things going on this year.”
The fun K-ROO offers includes broadcasting over the internet, hosting parties and mixers, giving away prizes and presenting live concerts. Because K-ROO encourages membership from students of any major and maintains complete creative control over all of the programs they air, the station features an array of representative voices.
Tune in to K-ROO at www.k-roo.org. To let your voice be heard, stop by the studio in Suite #303B of the Student Union or find them on Roo Groups. .
School of Computing and Engineering Teams
There are 19 organizations within the School of Computing and Engineering and thanks to the Student Mentoring and Recruitment Team Ambassadors, it’s easy to get involved.
“Freshmen don’t have to have any prior knowledge or automotive experience to join the team,” said Frame Team Leader and Document Design Coordinator of the Society of Automotive Engineers John Smith. “For a lot of us, last year was our first year doing it and we all learned as we went. Now, we can identify how the different parts of a vehicle work.”
One of the projects assigned to the Society of Automotive Engineers is to build an off-road vehicle from scratch.
“We drive around campus sometimes, and it’s all off-road, so you’ll see us going off the curbs, and it’s—it’s pretty cool,” Smith said.
Robotics Team Project Manager Cody Kaspzyk also welcomes underclassmen to the SCE.
“It’s not limited to engineering students,” Kaspzyk said. “We really try to encompass aspects of all degree majors so that we can get a good scope of students, and we try to get as many freshmen involved as possible.”
To make the organizations truly accessible, the UMKC Robotics Team offers coding workshops, soldering workshops and has even ordered pre-made kits that allow incoming freshmen to learn about things like integrated circuits.
The goal of the SCE’s Human-Powered Vehicle Team is to build a vehicle that can only be powered by human ability, which means no engine and no motor. Out of 31 teams in the Human-Powered Vehicle Challenge-East competition hosted by Ferris State University in Big Rapids, Mich., April 26-28, UMKC’s team ranked second in the women’s speed event and fourth in the men’s speed event.
“All of these are great ways to build a résumé,” Kaspzyk said. “These organizations show students how their designs actually have to be implemented in the real world. Employers are looking for hands-on experience and our organizations here at the SCE do just that.”
The Robotics Team, Human-Powered Vehicle Team and Society of Automotive Engineers are just a few of the programs that can be found on Roo Groups or the SCE’s website at http://sce.umkc.edu/ under Student Teams & Organizations.
The African American Student Union
The African American Student Union is one of several organizations within the Multicultural Student Organization Council and its calendar is always full of social affairs.
TAASU is planning an array of free events in the coming year, like the Welcome Back Barbeque during Welcome Week, a build day with Habitat for Humanity, its fall mixer in October and the Annual Freedom Breakfast and Soul Food Friday in January.
UMKC senior and TAASU President Aurielle Young recommends the organization as a means of taking advantage of a professional networking opportunity.
“I would encourage freshmen to participate in TAASU because it’s a great way to get involved with student events on campus as well as learning leadership skills,” Young said. “Most students who are members of TAASU branch off and become involved in other organizations as well.”
Young is excited about sharing TAASU with other students because of the sense of unity and expression it supports.
“TAASU really strives to bring about a sense of community within the African American student body,” Young said. “We do this by holding social, cultural, educational and political events on campus that meet the needs of the students. By doing this we also promote diversity by introducing the campus to our culture.”
All of the organizations within the MSOC can be found on Roo Groups, Facebook and its website at http://www.umkc.edu/msa.