Should I join a math club?

A letter writer has been invited to join a math club but doesn’t know whether to take the plunge.

Go for it, says our elder. You never regret doing; only not doing.

Dear EWC

I received an invitation for a math club that has chapters across the country, and they have competitions all the time. I would like to join as I like math a lot, but I also have been struggling with it a bit over the past few months. If I joined, I would get another pretty thing to add to college applications, something new to do, and another graduation cord for senior year. I am currently a sophomore and it is almost the end of the year, but college isn’t a top priority yet. The bad part about joining is I have to be able to convince the people who run the club that I am smart enough and willing to work with others. I have to give examples of why I would be beneficial to the club, and what direction the club should take for next year. I do not know how to do that, and I am scared to be rejected after applying. It could also be a dry experience and not worth it, so I don’t know if I want to try to join or not. What should I do? Should I apply to join, or should I focus on other parts of school?

Hedwig replies

Congratulations on being invited. You must be smart and a good math student to have received this invitation. You should be pleased. My advice is to join for these reasons:

  • Nothing ventured nothing gained.
  • You are not signing a lifetime contract, if you don’t like it, you can drop out.
  • You like math.
  • It would look good on college applications.
  • Why do you think you have to convince people that you are good? The fact that you got the invitation proves this.
  • Examples of why you would be beneficial – some ideas:

– That you are interested.
– That you are a hard worker
– That you would attempt to help with membership, or publicity, or something else they need.

  • Examples of directions the club might go in next year

– You could say that you would want to wait to see what directions it has gone in the past and what could be improved
– You could suggest academic directions – such as an additional competition or
– You could suggest social directions – maybe a Jeopardy-type game.
– You could suggest projects – such a working on the connection between music and math, or investigations of famous mathematicians. Find out what the club has been working on over the past few years.

  • You would meet new friends and have new experiences
  • Whether the experience would be dry or not would depend on you and what you would add to the group. You would have a say in their activities.
  • Attitude is everything. Remember: nothing ventured, nothing gained. The worst thing that could happen is that you didn’t like it – and you could quit.

My philosophy of life is to take advantage of opportunities. I have never regretted doing. I have sometimes regretted not doing!
Letter #: 439988
Category: School

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