Organizations and clubs are what form and manifest into a campus’ student life. Their impact is evident at UCR; on any given day you can see different flyers posters, and tables regarding any of the 400+ organizations the campus houses. The relevance to student life is in the variety of organizations and what they seek to accomplish. Each of these orgs can be grouped into 3 extremely broad categories: Social/Service, Academic/Honors, and Professional Development. To give you a little insight, I’ll share my experiences with student organizations and campus involvement.
Phi Sigma Pi National Honor Fraternity (Honors) “…to bring together some of the brightest and most motivated students on campus and work together in a spirit of excellence to encourage three ideals: 1) The acquisition and dissemination of information and knowledge through scholarship. 2) The application of professional skills and the fostering of leadership qualities by promoting and advancing the welfare of humanity. 3) The fostering of non-discriminatory, fraternal fellowship within our ranks.”
ΦΣΠ is an honors fraternity I helped found in Fall 2011. As the mission statement suggests, we seek to combine all of the qualities of a social fraternity, an honors society, and a community service organization. We’re a tight group of about 30 undergraduates from all different walks of life. We organize community service events such as beach/street cleanups (as well as contribute to existing events), scholarship events such as professionalism seminars and city-wide scavenger hunts as well as inter-chapter events with neighboring chapters at UCI, UCLA, and UCSD.
Even outside of these, we’ve all cemented friendships and expanded our networks to include someone in every part of UCR. Since the only requirement is a 3.0 GPA, all majors and backgrounds are represented by our fraternity; almost all of us are involved in UCR in some other fashion:from Residence Life to leading undergraduate research. Don’t get me wrong, we’re not all about work and service: we definitely know how to have a good time when the weekend hits!
Hylander Hype (Social) “We, the members of Hylander Hype at UCR, have established to provide an organization that seeks to raise the visibility of Highlander Spirit through different outlets on campus and instill a sense of pride in the student body of the University of California, Riverside.”
Hylander Hype is a recently rekindled organization to support and promote school spirit. If you go to any athletic event and see a particularly spirited group of students with face-paint and temporary tattoos, that’s probably us. I’ve certainly expanded my network by joining Hype through not just its members but through UCR Athletics as well. Our close relationship to Athletics has given me multiple opportunities to chat with the Director of Athletics, various head coaches, Chancellor Tim White, and even some of UCR’s athletes. Especially with the recent upswing in UCR’s athletic success, joining Hype was the best way for me to really show off my passion for my campus.
National Society of Black Engineers (Professional Development) “…to increase the number of culturally responsible Black engineers, who excel academically, succeed professionally, and positively impact the community”
NSBE creates a link from undergraduates to professionals.
It’s a nationally recognized organization and is a huge assistance to aspiring undergraduates. Being in NSBE has provided me with a plethora of potential scholarships, fellowships, internships, and research opportunities. Some of our alumni are employed by the likes of Intel, Ducommon Industries, and many more.
As you can see, I’m a pretty busy guy (add on 4 classes and 2 jobs!) but I love every second of it. My life is the organizations and clubs I’m a part of. They have helped me become a better student in every way. So I encourage you to join a student org and see how you can improve!
If you attended UCR’s Convocation, you got a small glimpse of one of
the newest organizations on campus: Hylander Hype.
Founded on the ideals of school spirit and pride, Hype seeks to establish
itself as a gateway for particularly spirited students to manifest their passion
into something greater. School pride (until recently) has always been
mediocre at UCR. Due to its relative youth, UCR’s prestige is hindered
when compared to that of more established UC schools, in turn creating
an underwhelming desire to attend. But something changed in the last
few years.. The number of applicants have skyrocketed. The acceptance
rate at UCR has notably decreased. UCR has even stopped using the UC
"referral pool" which had previously earned it the misnomer UCRejects.
Suddenly, UCR began to appear on national rankings lists competing
against schools far larger. We’ve built a brand spanking-new Material
Science and Engineering building, a medical school is slated for 2013
(the only one in Southern California), and we’re working on new
residence halls to house the ever growing number of Highlanders. I
could go on, but I think my point is clear: UCR is exploding, in a
UCR has gained huge momentum from last year. Despite budget cuts and
sporadic funding, UCR’s population grew by 2,000 students. Our Men’s
basketball team upset #1 CSULB to advance to conference finals with
our Women’s team doing the same. For the 2011-2012 year, our Men’s
soccer team is 6-3-1 and undefeated at home, earning its second ever
regional ranking just half a loss behind #8 CSUF.
During their bout against rivals UCSB, the student bleacher section literally overflowed with fans forcing 80+ students to stand along the sideline as they
cheered for their fellow Highlanders. The energy was almost tangible
as people were jostled by screaming fans. The Hype section was
particularly vibrant with 50+ students constantly on their feet
yelling and cheering and singing.
Photo Still: youtube.com/ucrathletics
I was one of those students, and had never been prouder to be a
Highlander. UCR’s potential is nearly infinite and is beginning to
manifest as the young campus matures. Having school spirit is all too
easy when anyone can look around and see the huge diversity and feel
the sense of community UCR has to offer. What better way to give back
than to flaunt and show off that spirit?
Source: Hylander Hype
The sheer number of UCR sweater, shirts, and car decals is overwhelming when I think back to my first year here. Loving UCR is the cool thing to do now, and haters won’ t last. UCR’s taking over and I feel bad for anyone who tries to stop us.
Photo Credit: Carlos Puma
If you don’t believe me, go to the Men’s soccer game vs. UCI this
Wednesday (Oct. 12, 7:00pm). Hylander Hype will be there in full
effect as our Highlanders seek to advance their conference record to
2-1 and their home record to 5-0. If you do believe me, then you were
probably going to go to the game anyways. Either way, I’ll see you
With so much to stand for, there’s never been a better time to have
Highlander pride. I’ll leave you with a question to keep you focused:
Photo Credit: Carlos Puma