Story by Ashley Traylor, Staff writer
While students may be perceived as apathetic toward involvement on campus, that appearance can be attributed to over-involvement and eventual exhaustion.
Clint Combs, Student Government president, said he does not think apathy has risen among students on campus. Instead, students are more selective with their free time.
“It is my belief that if a student does not feel it is adding value to their life, they will not participate,” Combs said.
There are times when programs and activities do not have a large turnout and it is frustrating, said Don Robertson, vice president of Student Affairs.
“They are not any more apathetic than the last few years,” Robertson said.
There are more than 150 organizations at Murray State to get plugged into and many rallies to voice opinions about.
“We really have a sensory overload when it comes to social media, campus events and school work,” Combs said. “I do not think it is that students are not getting involved, as much as they are being more selective of what they get involved in.”
Even though some students are not involved on campus, it does not mean they are apathetic. Students have more responsibilities and some have full-time jobs, in addition to going to school.
“I think apathy could just be because people are so exhausted from having to do everything that they just want to do that and relax rather than going out and doing something,” said Shayna Smith, sophomore from Murray.
Students may have busy schedules instead of being apathetic.
“It is not fair to say they are apathetic, but they simply just do not have the time,” Robertson said. “They would like to do more things, but their schedule does not allow it.”
Caroline Cropp, freshman from Lexington, Kentucky, said she is involved in Kappa Delta, but she has not found a balance between school and outside activities yet.
Many students find themselves overwhelmed the first semester of college and do not value getting involved but, “finding a place on campus is critical to developing yourself, meeting people, better your chances of getting a job or into graduate school and taking an average college experience to an amazing one,” Combs said.
While some students do not have time in their schedules to accommodate extracurricular activities, other students do not realize the power of their influence.
There are rallies on campus, though in the past few years they have become more subtle and low-key, Robertson said. But there will always be a vocal concern group.
“The challenge is to get the average student to realize the power they can have,” Robertson said. “Students can have a great deal of influence when they do speak for or against something.”
The number of clubs and organizations on campus offers something for everyone, and students should join something they are passionate about, Combs said.
“I think it makes college a lot more enjoyable whenever you are actually involved in something, because otherwise you are just going to classes, and that can be boring,” Smith said. “So, it is good to actually put yourself out there and get to know other people.”
Murray State can advertise more events and clubs on social media. Since students spend a lot time on social media, it would be a good way to get the word out, Smith said.
Student Government Association is trying to make advertising more engaging and to the point marketing, Combs said.
We need to keep encouraging students to get involved because we value their opinions and we value their input, Robertson said.