Campus and Student Life

A group of male students is walking; most are wearing women's shoes, and one holds a sign that reads, "Walk a Mile in Her Shoes."

I even lived on campus to get the college experience. I had five roommates and I still keep in touch with them while I’m on the road. —Tatyana Ali, actress, model, and R&B singer

Learning Objectives

By the end of this section, you will be able to:

  • Describe the variety of organized groups available on campus for both resident and nonresident students
  • Identify resources for learning more about campus organizations
  • Describe the benefits of participating in student life

Student Life

Whether your campus is small, tall, grande, or venti, you are probably amazed by the array of institutionally supported student activities available for your enrichment and enjoyment. Perhaps your biggest challenge is deciding how much extra time you have after studying and which added activities yield the greatest reward.

Below are two videos that give a sample of campus life at two different types of colleges. The first is from a large state institution—the University of Maryland. The second is from a smaller, private college—Baldwin Wallace University. Regardless, though, of where your institution fits on the spectrum of size, or how many activities, clubs, and organizations your institution offers, it’s very important for you to be able to explore co-curricular interests—for learning, enjoyment, and personal satisfaction. Student life should always be satisfying and rewarding to students, as well as to alumni, faculty, staff, and community members. Together, these groups are an institution’s lifeblood.

University of Maryland

Baldwin Wallace

Organized Groups on Campus

Student Organizations

Colleges have an abundance of student organizations. Some examples you may be familiar with are the Hillel Student Organization for enriching the lives of Jewish students, the Chess Club, and Model United Nations. Larger institutions may have hundreds of such organizations. Here is a lengthy and exciting list of student organizations at the University of Maryland Baltimore County.

Participating in extracurricular activities can bring a whole new perspective to your life as a Cochise College student. Activities encourage leadership and service while also giving students the opportunity to have fun, socialize and learn time-management skills.

Many Cochise College campus events are the result of student clubs and organizations, which are governed by the Student Government Association (SGA). If you want your time on campus to be more than class time, you can make it happen by joining a student organization.

If you do not find a club you are interested in joining, start your own! Your favorite hobby or activity can give your resume a boost. All you need is an approved faculty or staff member to serve as a club advisor and five additional students. Check out the New Club Development Packet or stop by the SGA office to learn more about the approval process.

Generally, an organization is created and run by current students, and it’s sponsored by an executive officer, dean, or director of a major academic or operational unit. An organization must also have a mission that’s consistent with the mission of the college and sponsor. It might also collect dues from members, but in many cases, membership is free.

To link up with a student organization, you may not need to do much more than take stock of your interests. What do you love to do? In a later section, you’ll find a list of ways to learn about student organizations at your institution. If you find that your college doesn’t have an organization that speaks to your particular interests, you might consider starting one.

Diversity and Multiculturalism

Diversity and multiculturalism are indeed critical pursuits not just on college campuses but in communities, businesses, and organizations around the world. If you are interested in expanding and promoting awareness of this issues on campus and further afield, you can seek opportunities at your college for starters. You will likely find informal gatherings, presentations, campus-wide events, individual students and classes focused on creating diverse, multicultural, and inclusive communities. As an example, here is a list of some of the Cochise College student clubs relating to culture and diversity.

The American Sign Language Club, or ASL Club, is a student club whose mission is to bridge the gap between the hearing and Deaf communities in Cochise County. We provide accessible activities (interpreted) for the Deaf and opportunities for ASL students to improve their skills by socializing with the Deaf.

Cochise Pride Club is an on campus resource for gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender students and their allies. Cochise Pride promotes awareness and acceptance of the diversity inherent to sexuality and gender.

TRiO/SSS Club TRiO is a campus organization designed exclusively for and by TRiO Student Support Services participants. This is a student leadership organization where you can build community and get to know others who have decided to be leaders in their own right. The Cochise College Douglas Campus TRiO/SSS program is currently designed to serve 160 low-income, first-generation and/or disabled college students. The goal of TRiO/SSS is to increase the college retention and graduation rates of these students and to facilitate the transition process from one level of higher education to the next.

Civic Engagement and Leadership

Most colleges have many opportunities for you to learn about and prepare for civic engagement and leadership on campus and in the wider community. What is civic engagement? It’s your involvement in protecting and promoting a diverse and democratic society—and clearly, leadership is an important part of this. Student organizations and activities related to these pursuits may be student government associations, leadership courses and retreats, social change projects, service opportunities, social innovation initiatives, and many others.

One of the Cochise College student clubs relating to civic engagement and leadership is the Rotaract Club. The purpose of Rotaract is to provide an opportunity for young men and women to enhance the knowledge and skills that will assist them in personal development, to address the physical and social needs of their communities, and to promote better relations between all people worldwide through a framework of friendship and service.

Service and Volunteerism

If you are like many new college students, you probably already have experience volunteering. It may have been part of your high school requirements. Or perhaps you engaged in volunteering as part of a faith organization or as part of a community fundraising effort. Any of your volunteering can continue in college, too, as your institution will have many special and meaningful ways to stay involved, work on social problems, and contribute to a better world. Service and volunteer efforts may include philanthropy, activism, social entrepreneurship, advocacy, and direct service.[1]

Two of the clubs at Cochise College that are highly engaged in service and volunteerism are Phi Theta Kappa and the Disaster Relief Club. Phi Theta Kappa is an international honor society for two-year college students. Membership is based primarily on academic achievement. Membership entitles students to numerous opportunities for service, leadership, scholarship and fellowship. The purpose of the Disaster Relief Club is to provide Cochise College students with an opportunity of increasing their volunteering experience outside the local cities by traveling to distinct places around the United States or internationally assisting communities that have aggravated damages caused by natural disasters.

Student Activities

On any college campus, satellite center, or virtual space, students may be involved in activities around the clock on any given day. At Cochise College, these activities include student organization activities as well as special presentations, meetings, performing arts events, sporting events, intramurals, recreational activities, local community activities, holiday events, commemorative events, and so on.

A sampling of ongoing student organization activities includes the following clubs: Tabletop Games, Taekwondo, Dance & Fitness Groove, Digital Media Arts, Literary Guild, Student Veterans Association, and many more.

Career / Majors

Cochise College also provide student club organizations related to career and major interests and to the development of specific skill sets.  A sampling of these are as follows:

Armed Forces Communications and Electronics Association (AFCEA) Club: Cochise College’s AFCEA Club is a sub chapter of AFCEA International (Armed Forces Communications and Electronics Association), which is a non-profit membership association serving the military, government, industry, and academia as an ethical forum for advancing professional knowledge and relationships in the fields of communications, IT, intelligence, and global security.

SkillsUSA BCT: Our purpose is an applied method of instruction for preparing America’s high performance workers in public career and technical programs. It provides quality education experiences for students in leadership, teamwork, citizenship and character development. It builds and reinforces self-confidence, work attributes and communication skills. It emphasizes total quality at work: high ethical standards, superior work skills, life-long education, and pride in the dignity of work. SkillsUSA BCT also promotes understanding of the free-enterprise system and involvement in community service.
SkillsUSA Welding is the national organization for students in trade, industrial, technical, and health occupation programs in public high schools, vocational schools, junior colleges and community colleges. SkillsUSA Welding offers leadership, citizenship and character development program to complement the vocational student’s skill training. This program helps students to better prepare themselves for the labor market. The club emphasizes respect for the dignity of work, high standards in trade ethics, workmanship, scholarship and safety.

MACS (Math and Computer Science) Club: This club for math or computer science majors includes members from both Cochise and the University of Arizona South.

Apache Flying Club:The primary purpose of the Apache Flying Club is to help promote aviation related activities through meaningful engagement among students at Cochise College.

Culinary Club: The Cochise Culinarians are a group of food enthusiasts who plan catering events, love community service projects, practice new food trends, and have a great time eating and feeding people gourmet food.

Respiratory Therapy Student Association: The mission of the Respiratory Therapy Student Association is to enhance the educational experience of the students in the Respiratory Therapy Program, and to enhance the community education concerning pulmonary diseases.

Student Nurses Association (SNA): The Cochise College SNA supports students preparing for initial licensing as a registered nurse. We welcome students accepted to the nursing program as well as those preparing to apply. The SNA is firmly committed to community service. Members have the opportunity to develop their skills while giving back.


Sports Medicine Club: The objective of this club is to give club members realistic and up to date
experience and knowledge related to Sports Medicine by the following: Introduction to Sports
Medicine, Basic Human Anatomy, Basic Biomechanics, Athletic Training, Physical Therapy,
Physician’s Assistant, Kinesiologist, Health & Physical Educator, Personal Trainer, Strength &
Conditioning, Sports Psychologist, Massage Therapist, Ergonomist, Biomechanist, Medical

Cochise College – Douglas Campus is home to the college’s competitive sports teams: baseball, women’s soccer, men’s and women’s basketball and men’s and women’s rodeo. Athletic facilities are available for a variety of sports; there is a rodeo arena and a physical education facility, including a gymnasium, wellness center and weight room.

Fraternities and Sororities

Fraternities and sororities are social organizations at colleges and universities. The terms “Greek letter organization” (“GLO”) and “Greek life” are often used to describe fraternities and sororities. Generally, you obtain membership while you are an undergraduate, but your membership continues for life. Most Greek organizations have five shared elements: secrecy, single-sex membership, rushing and pledging to select new members, occupancy in a shared residence, and identification with Greek letters. Fraternities and sororities also engage in philanthropic activities, and they often host parties and other events that may be popular across campus.

You are heartily encouraged to pursue any interests that enhance your education and enrich your student experience. Your participation can expand your horizons, deepen your interests, and connect you with new people.

Resources for Learning About Campus Organizations

It can seem overwhelming to learn about all the activities, events, clubs, organizations, athletics, performing arts, etc. on campus. Sometimes you may need to dig a little, too. The following resources are a good place to start:

  • Cochise College Web site: Try a keywords search at your college’s Web site, using any of the following: student life, college life, student organizations, clubs, student activities office, student services, special events, events calendar, performing arts calendar, athletics calendar, etc.
  • Email: Keep alert to the many email messages you receive from campus offices and organizations. They publicize all kinds of activities and opportunities for you to engage with campus and student life.
  • Other technology-based support services: Take advantage of other technology-based student support services if they are available. For example, some colleges use an online platform that connects student organizations and allows them to reach out to prospective new members. With this service, you could access a list of student organizations to see which ones you might like to join and see what events are ahead. You can also can search for organizations based on categories or interests.
  • Social media: Most institutions keep up-to-date information on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and more. Individual groups on campus may also have separate social media presences that you can locate through the institution’s offerings.
  • Bulletin boards: Take a look at bulletin boards as you pass through hallways in academic buildings, dining halls, sports facilities, dormitories, even local service centers, and retail stores. You can often find fliers with event details and contact information.
  • Friends: Keep a pulse on what others are doing in their spare time. This is also a good way to make new friends and align yourself with others who have similar interests.
  • Campus offices for social functions: Make a point to visit the student activities office or the student affairs office. Both often have physical spaces for student organizations.
  • Campus offices for academic functions: Inquire with your academic adviser. He or she will likely be knowledgeable about campus organizations related to your interests and may know about local, regional and national organizations, too.

Activity: Campus and Community Activities

This project involves attending two campus and/or community culture activities (not athletic events), collecting mementos from each event, and displaying evidence of your experience via social media.


  • Attend campus activities/events to heighten a sense of connection with your institution
  • Use social media to display artifacts from these events


  • Choose two activities to attend (athletic events not included).
  • Collect mementos (such as a ticket stub, a program, take pictures and/or video).
  • Digitally archive them (for example, take a digital picture of the ticket stub).
  • Create a digital presentation about your two activities. For each activity, include the following:
    • what, when, and where the activity occurred
    • why you chose the activity
    • uploads of the related mementos
    • what you learned from the experience
  • Follow your instructor’s directions for submitting this activity.

Benefits of Participating in Student Life

How is it that becoming fully involved in student life can have such a positive impact on student satisfaction and academic success?

The National Survey of Student Engagement—a survey measuring student involvement in academic and co-curricular activities—shows that student success is directly linked to student involvement in the institution. In fact, survey results show that the higher the level of student involvement is, the higher student grades are and the more likely students are to re-enroll the next semester. All of this seems to translate to satisfaction. The following lists some of the many benefits and rewards that result from active participation in campus and student life.

  • Personal interests are tapped: Co-curricular programs and activities encourage students to explore personal interests and passions. As students pursue these interests, they learn more about their strengths and possible career paths. These discoveries can be lasting and life-changing.
  • A portfolio of experience develops: Experience with just about any aspect of college life may be relevant to a prospective employer. Is freshman year too soon to be thinking about résumés? Definitely not! If you gain leadership experience in a club, for example, be sure to document what you did so you can refer back to it (you might want to keep track of your activities and experiences in a journal, for instance).
  • Fun leads to good feelings: Students typically pursue co-curricular activities because the activities are enjoyable and personally rewarding. Having fun is also a good way to balance the stress of meeting academic deadlines and studying intensely.
  • Social connections grow: When students are involved in co-curricular activities, they usually interact with others, which means meeting new people, developing social skills, and being a part of a community. It’s always good to have friends who share your interests and to develop these relationships over time.
  • Awareness of diversity expands: The multicultural nature of American society is increasingly reflected and celebrated on college campuses today. You will see this not only in the classroom but also in the co-curricular activities, clubs, organizations, and events. For example, your college might have a Black Student Union, an Asian Pacific Student Union, a Japanese Student Association, a Chinese Student Association, and many others. Having access to these resources gives students the opportunity to explore different cultures and prepare to live, work, and thrive in a vibrantly diverse world.
  • Self-esteem grows: When students pursue their special interests through co-curricular activities, it can be a real boost to self-esteem. Academic achievement can certainly be a source of affirmation and satisfaction, but it’s nice to have additional activities that validate your special contributions in other ways.
Photo of a Eagle mascot sitting on the lap of a woman in bleachers, while people around her smile

All in all, being involved in the campus community is vital to every student, and it’s vital to the college, too. It’s a symbiotic relationship that serves everyone well.

The key to getting the most out of college is to take advantage of as many facets of student life as possible while still keeping up with your academic commitments. That’s pretty obvious, right? What may be less obvious is that focusing exclusively on your academic work and not getting involved in any of the rich and diverse cocurricular activities on campus can come at a real price and even hamper your success.