Senior Associate Director, MBA Admissions at USC Marshall School of Business
Los Angeles, California
What a great question! It's never too early to think about building your college resume. Let me add to the tips already presented. Think of your build around one word: LEADERSHIP! Employers want to see more than just activity, they want to see that you've stretched yourself into leadership roles. It's better to have a few activities with solid leadership demonstration, versus a laundry list of activities where you remained an individual contributor. Academics and tech skills may get you to the interview, but demonstrating leadership increases your chances of getting the offer significantly. This article from 2015 can give you an idea:
http://college.usatoday.com/2015/07/22/hiring-recent-college-graduates/. I has to work while in college to cover costs, but when I graduated, I was able to get on great projects with my employers due to pursuing leadership roles quickly once I was hired.
As others have stated, seek activities that speak to your passions and interests. Managing your time is very important so that your academics do not suffer.
This professional recommends the following next steps:
- Check to see if the colleges to which you have interest have clubs/organizations that speak to your passion(s)
- Prioritize the activities you think you want to do, and come up with a list of about 6 options. Make your top 3 your focus, and maybe add others if your school/life balance permits.
- Consider an organization that interests you but you've never tried. Who knows? this may be the one where your light shines the brightest.
- As you get involved, make sure you check in with yourself periodically to assess if you're still having fun. No need to stay in an activities that drain your spirit. Being a leader can be challenging, but should never feel like a burden.