Unlike students attending brick-and-mortar academic institutions, online students are not exactly privy to the dynamics of actual interaction. They attend their online classes and basically get on with their lives. Sure, they communicate with their instructors and online classmates and peers, but they do not listen to or speak with everyone as organically as they would in actual, face-to-face encounters. Safe to say that campus life is a natural affair that online students don’t experience throughout their academic life.
That said, are online students missing out?
Considering the numerous social groups and clubs offered in online schools, no online student should live (and study) in solitude. Called virtual social clubs, they provide the platform for online students to foster a deeper connection with their peers. They also encourage peer support. Most importantly, they help form friendships beyond borders.
The unconventional learning environment makes online education a challenge; virtual social clubs help them cope. Online students join these organizations that provide opportunities for an engaging connection with their peers. Online students may choose academic honor societies, non-profit volunteer organizations, music and other academic groups, and everything else in between. The options are practically endless!
In virtual social clubs, online interactions are not limited. Members interact with each other on Facebook or Skype, form group chats and, oftentimes, meet in person. These clubs or organizations bridge students who share a connection because of their common interests. They provide a platform for members to develop certain skills that may lead to long-term relationships. Most importantly, virtual social clubs exist to support online students in their journey to finishing school.
Why Join a Virtual Club
Despite the glaring differences in their academic learning styles and peer-to-peer interaction, on-campus learners and online students share a common experience when it comes to social clubs: there is actual and constant communication. Perhaps what sets them apart is the “where” of it all. These days, however, online communities often meet outside of class–a welcome experience for online students who typically don’t get to know their fellow learners or teachers on a more personal level.
Want to connect with other online students and perhaps actually get to see, speak and spend time with your professors? Actively look for a virtual social club that fits your academic needs and hobbies! Start by checking out the student life office of your online campus. Search for the online organization that matches your interests and goals, and sign up for one with a primary aim of helping members grow personally, academically and professionally.
Virtual Clubs from the Top Online Universities
Truth be told; college is much more fun and exciting with friends–not just acquaintances–whom you actually spend time with. Crawl out of your cave and join a virtual social club that is a positive fit for you and resonates with your values.
Check out these hand-picked virtual social clubs that you, a dedicated online college student, should be part of:
Ranked as the #1 Best Online Bachelor’s Programs, Ohio State University (OSU) can make your dreams of a college diploma a reality. With a flexible academic environment, OSU allows you to explore and prepare for a successful career. Academic excellence starts with their world-renowned faculty members. Most importantly, the university understands your need for social connection.
The Ohio State University Office of Student Life is a hotspot for various student activities. OSU students may choose to join from over 1,400 student organizations that provide numerous opportunities for students to connect with others. It is a global community of dedicated students and professional staff belonging to the Academic, Awareness or Activism, Community Service, Creative and Performing Arts, Ethnic or Cultural, and other membership categories.
Aside from building lasting friendships, student organizations at OSU present a world of perks for members. It is a medium for academic discussions, and of course, for the personal growth of its members in terms of skills, including leadership. It is little wonder why students who engage in social clubs at OSU perform better academically.
Arizona State University (ASU) is “the Sun Devil Nation”. If you want to become a Sun Devil, ASU is the university for you. As an ASU online student, you will be embracing the diversity and the traditions that make up the Sun Devil pride. ASU Online students have a community that reaches out to everyone wherever part of the world they are. The university underscores the importance of “preserving the Sun Devil”, through which connections and traditions are have defined the university since 1896. At ASU, it is about socializing and staying connected.
A helpful space to discuss experiences in the online campus are ASU Clubs that are represented by the university’s beloved mascot Sparky. Various clubs are available to allow you to engage meaningful interactions with your classmates and students around the university and get acquainted with other online students from all over the world. There is a club for the business-minded, as well as those who love the humanities, or have a core interest in government, health, and educational affairs. Take your Sun Devil Remembrance from these clubs. The options are endless!
Ashford University (AU), a private academic institution, takes pride in its high-quality, affordable online education. The university caters to a diverse community of students who make up the rich culture and history of AU. Academic excellence is central to the mission and vision of Ashford University. Their students’ personal and professional advancement is the primary motivation of AU’s faculty and staff. Of course, socialization, brotherhood, and community create a holistic academic experience for all on-campus and online students.
Alpha Sigma Lambda Honor Society – Ashford University Chapter is a fraternal organization that supports non-traditional students. Aside from the brotherhood that ASL provides, it aims to support students as they complete their degree through their scholarship programs. The Society believes that remarkable students deserve to receive assistance in achieving a college diploma. Dr. Rollin Posey, the Society’s founder wrote that the Society
…stands to bind together into one Society the excellent students within the University College in order to provide a stimulus to and recognition for their worthy efforts to make best use of their college years.
Their members are adult students who are responsible for keeping the Society in full operation while maintaining academic excellence. Hailed as the oldest and largest community-based honor society, the Ashford University Chapter was established on April 9, 2007. Students who seek membership in the chapter must be enrolled in AU and belong to the highest 20% of students. Additionally, he or she must have successfully completed a minimum of 24 credits and 12 credits of liberal arts.
Berkeley College Online has been consistent in its commitment to bring the best online education to the world. For the fifth consecutive year, the U.S. News & World Report puts Berkeley College among the Best Colleges for Online Bachelor’s Degrees. Most notable is its number ranking among the colleges in the state of New Jersey. The college prepares students for both professional and personal success by engaging them in career-focused degree programs that respond to today’s highly in-demand careers.
Focusing on a remarkable career opportunity does not mean that you should miss out on an exciting campus life. Berkeley Online Campus offers a wide array of clubs for you to join. The Student Development and Campus Life Department makes sure that online students will have the “campus life”, even virtually. They make sure that the online community is safe and secure to foster a healthy and meaningful communication and interaction. There is an exclusive Social Media network where students can connect with the Berkeley community.
Student club membership is encouraged at Berkeley. It is an opportunity to connect with other students in the entire distance learning system. Having a club is an important part of the Berkeley experience!
- Book Club: if you are a bookworm and enjoys discussing books, the this club is for you! Students, faculty and staff are welcome to join. You may find the group on Goodreads.com.
- Film Club: the Online Film Club is a place for members to view movies with a group of like-minded individuals. If you are a student, faculty, or staff at Berkeley College, you are welcome to join the Film Club.
If you choose to get an online degree, Penn State World Campus is a top choice! Penn State continues to rank in the Top 10 list of the best online undergraduate and graduate programs. Aside from the flexible class schedules as an obvious advantage, there are various opportunities for students to engage in school activities. Get involved with clubs, organizations and activities. These are some of the organizations you can join while at Penn State World Campus:
Active Minds is a student support group for students and by students. The organization recognizes the difficulties of college life and aims to support and promote mental health. By creating awareness and busting the preconceived notion of mental health, Active Minds is making a huge difference. Connect with them through chat or video chat, whatever makes you feel comfortable and at home. Active Minds welcomes everyone, and for free! Mental illness is something you should not suffer from alone–Active Minds can help. They can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The American Association of University Women is a progressive group of community leaders who are focused on educating and empowering women and young girls. Develop your leadership potential and connect with other great women leaders worldwide.
Apparently a club for Psychology students, the World Campus Psychology Club is your way to connect with your course-mates and Psychology faculty members. Share your ideas, experiences, and academic difficulties with those who understand your struggle. Show support and create a friendly environment to everyone who shares your passion for the program.
As the world worries about sustainability, students have found a way to come together for the common cause of making the Earth sustainable. The World Campus Sustainability Club took the step to connect students, teachers, and people across borders who share the goal of preserving the environment.
The purpose of the World Campus Sustainability club is to educate members and others about the importance of the environment, and about both environmental and sustainability issues. We aim to encourage awareness and motivate students to get involved in their communities.
It is indeed a World of Possibilities. Online. Most importantly, it provides a space for creative expression without regard to geographic location. The unique way to discover your future begins at Penn State.
Virtual Clubs for Every Online College Student
If you happen to enjoy connecting with other students outside of your online campus, there are clubs that welcome everyone. Members come from around the globe, coming together to create lifelong connections with their fellow online students. After all, having people to share your experiences with is a healthy way to express yourself.
We’ve put together a select number of virtual clubs or organizations that might spark your interest. Do check them out to have the full college experience.
Second Life is a virtual community of students coming from all over the globe. It provides a means of connecting to a global community through various activities available on the website. The virtual world can be accessed freely and users can create an avatar which represents themselves. The immersive 3D-generation is an extraordinary tool for today’s learners. Artists, musicians, writers, and engineers come together in the community to share and discuss real-life situations. It is a simulation that engages anyone who believes in technology’s massive potential to make a difference in students’ lives.
Second Life is a hotspot for online collaborations. It is not all fun and games in Second Life as it promises a great deal of assistance to academic institutions. Some of the world’s top universities make use of this technology. Because it offers a cost-effective solution to distance learning, it serves as a platform for lectures. Discover a number of virtual clubs within the virtual world. Indulge in the words of Shakespeare in Book Clubs, and engineer some of the most complicated machines with Engineering majors. Whatever you wish to experience, it is possible in Second Life.
If you think only on-campus students can experience a college blender, think again. Just because you are online doesn’t excuse you from on one of the most amazing experiences you will ever have in college. College Blender allows you to find a community where you can be yourself and shares your interests. It promises “a complete university lifestyle resource.”
Members of the community shares study tips that actually work. Of course, there are resources that teach you how to manage your stress especially during exams. And College Blender does not shy away from talking about partying and alcohol. Basically, the community prepares you or college and for the real world. Balance is key to winning your battles: college life is your current battle. You are also welcome to share your ideas with the community. If you happen have the recipe for an effective hangover cure, you are welcome to contribute. Everything and everyone is welcome in College Blender, so what are you waiting for? Go ahead, read up or share your wisdom to the world.
The African American Literature Book Club (AALBC) is the largest and of course, the number one website dedicated to African American Books and Black Literature. It is a community where the Black culture, as expressed through books, is celebrated. Readers from all walks of life gather to celebrate the rich history and culture of the African American community.
Black literature is for everyone. Because the community believes that the world should see and understand the culture, a collection of books is available on the site. Black authors are recognized for their contributions and applauded for their work. It is truly an overwhelming community where strangers become family because of shared culture and history. Join AALBC in their mission to open the world’s eyes to the richness of Black literature. With the #readingblack movement, everyone is encouraged to read quality books by black authors. Support the mission, join the movement, and make a difference in your personal choices. You may join the conversations on AALBC.com.
The good old Goodreads. It is the holy grail of books online. To this day, Goodreads remains as the largest site for a community of readers. It is the go-to online place for book recommendations. Sharing a book you love is the ultimate goal of the website. At Goodreads, readers form a large community that communicate through books and book reviews. What is more interesting is that Goodreads operates as “a community within the community”. You can find a group where you believe you belong in. There are hundreds of groups to choose from! Goodreads is the perfect virtual community for the bookworm in you. All you have to do is choose what book to read next, and be ready to share it to the world.
The online world is a thriving community of people from every corner of the world. It best that we take advantage of the opportunity to connect with others in a way that leaves a positive impact. Negativity is lightweight; it is easily spread. On the other hand, spreading positivity needs a conscious effort to succeed. Let us begin with the online communities that were made available to ease our lives. These virtual clubs exist to assist us in the best way possible.