By Gabby Delpleash

Sitting on her bed, senior Libby Strathman looks through her collection of college acceptance letters. Strathman, who applied to eight different universities, carefully crafted her college resume by getting involved in various extracurriculars.

Senior Libby Strathman prioritizes her extracurriculars as a way to make connections

February 8, 2023

Preparing for college is, for many students, all in the extracurriculars. One of these students is senior Libby Strathman whose extracurriculars have not only helped her prepare for college, but also helped her to find the right major for her.

Strathman is involved in a wide variety of activities and sports including the school store, the Catty Shack, where she serves as the president, National Honor Society where she serves as the president, National English Honor Society where she serves as the vice president, Relay for Life where serves as an executive leadership officer, Youth for Refugees where she serves as an officer, DECA, Spanish National Honor Society, Jag Pride, varsity track for three years and tennis for two years.

Working at the Catty Shack and being a member of DECA introduced Strathman to the world of business. These activities have helped Strathman to settle on double majoring in finance and accounting at an undecided university. Strathman describes what initially interested her about these activities.

“I joined DECA, which is a student business hands-on learning [activity] last year, my junior year, and I was pretty good at it,” Strathman said. “I thought it was really fun. Then this year, I am president of our school store, so that has given me a lot more of a firsthand look into how businesses run.”

In addition to helping her decide on a major, her many extracurricular activities have provided Strathman with a network of people to help her succeed.

By Julia Shumaker

“I really got involved in extracurriculars and I just tried to set myself up with as many connections as I could,” Strathman said. “I think more so than just having something to put on your application, being a part of extracurriculars really gives you a network of people who want you to succeed and do well. I think that’s been really beneficial to me.”

Even in sports, which Strathman does not plan on continuing in college, she has learned valuable skills to prepare.

“I think [sports] gave me a lot of discipline,” Strathman said. “There’s this theory. I can’t remember the name of it; basically it’s your work will expand to fill the time you allot for it. So honestly, the biggest thing with sports was I was busy all the time. I had a pretty structured schedule and that just forced me to develop pretty good study habits where [I would say to myself] ‘hey, you have two hours for this and that’s the most you’re getting so you better get it done.’ I think that was really beneficial.”

Outside of extracurriculars, Strathman finds it important to stay ahead of schedule with academics and college applications. This summer, Strathman was able to write most of her college application essays allowing her to focus all of her attention on academics during the school year. She advises anyone going through the college application process to do the same.

“I would say try and start as early as you can,” Strathman said. “If you have any idea of what path you’re wanting to go on, I would say really focus on the extracurriculars and those resume builders you do around that singular interest because that’s going to make you really stand out. I think to have more of a spike in your application rather than in general overall [helps]. But my base advice I could give would just be don’t stress over anything.”

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