What courses or extracurriculars shall I do while in 9th grade?Answered
I am a 9th grade student from Odisha, India. I am descent in my studies and score between 80-90% every year. This year, I am in my freshman year of high school. I am confused about whether I should do some extracurriculars or focus on my studies only for the term of 2 years-9th and 10th. I hope to see good results this time provided I work hard but I also want to check out some quality extracurriculars that can help build my profile. Please let me know if there is something that I can do to boost my profile along with my academics.
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I agree with the comment below, always put grades and course rigor first. That being said, grades aren't the only things that will boost your profile. You should do extracurriculars and your studies at the same time. You should do ECs that you enjoy or are related to the career you want to pursue in the future.
Law career: speech team, debate team, mock trial, Model UN, etc.
Medical career: Science Olympiad, Math Olympiad/team, HOSA, research, health clubs/teams in general.
Engineering/STEM career: Robotics teams, science olympiad, research, math team/olympiad, stem/engineering clubs in general.
Teaching career: Speech team, debate team, Math/science/English/History olympiads or clubs, writing clubs, etc.
"the arts" (music, art, acting, etc) career: Dance teams, singing competitions, art clubs, theater, speech teams, writing clubs, etc.
Other side notes:
- do volunteering
- do competitions (that will allow you to learn or win prestigious awards)
- do an EC you enjoy.
- do an EC that will make you a better person.
- don't do 15 different ECs or just 1 EC.
- maybe do 4-9 extracurriculars and focus on the top 2-4 you are best at.
These are just some general examples of extracurriculars, you don't have to follow this. I plan on going into medicine, but I'm on the debate team, speech team, science olympiad, tennis team, student government, state choir, etc. It's okay to be in a variety of clubs that aren't directly related to the career you want to pursue.
The main thing is to do something that you enjoy and will benefit you. It will become quite evident if you are just doing a club/team just to put it on your college application. If you don't have any of these clubs at your school, start them! Colleges always like it when you take initiative and start a club at your school on your own. It's okay if the club/team starts out with just a few people, over time it will grow.
I mentioned this earlier, you should simultaneously do extracurriculars and school studies. This shows colleges that you are able to focus on more than just school while keeping your grades up. It's sort of like a "wow factor" to colleges. It allows them to see who you truly are (college application essays also do this). Grades don't show what kind of person you are. For example, you could be failing school but also be the next Arijit Singh. Extracurriculars allow colleges to somewhat see what type of person you are. Also, in certain clubs, after being on the club for a certain amount of time ie months/years, you can earn yourself a status like being a varsity member or president/captain of that club or team. If you start late in the extracurricular, you won't have much of a chance to have a prestigious position in the club/team.
Try asking your seniors or other experienced college students what extracurriculars you should do. If you have a particular college in mind, find (multiple) students that attend that college and see what they did to get accepted to that college.
I hope this was helpful. Let me know if you have any questions.
If you had to choose between grades and ECs, always choose grades. After that choose course rigor (meaning takes challenging classes), then ECs, then essays.
Since you are a very good student and get between 80% and 90% try to get your grades up to 90%-95%. That's very important more so than ECs. Once your grades are up you can focus some extra time on ECs during 10th, 11th, and 12th grade.
You have to pick your battles and I would recommend focusing on grades and course rigor as your main priority.
I see this a lot, and most people say that it doesn't matter, but if you are in a prestigious organization, that would definitely help with your applications. As for your grades, that will help with your applications.
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