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The main idea is to get a high-quality education while you’re at college, but you can’t study all the time! You need extracurricular activities to make friends, relieve stress and have fun. Most schools offer a variety of student organizations. Find out what clubs the college offers that match your interests and inquire about the organization’s activities, members and qualifications.
College is a great place to take a leadership role. It’s a great experience for you and looks wonderful on your résumé when you graduate. Look into leadership training or opportunities to become an officer or leader in the organizations that interest you.
Positions also are available in student government, activities planning councils, residence halls, honor societies and other groups. Don’t be shy — you’ll have a richer college experience if you get involved.
Campus life also means football games and other athletic events, concerts, plays, dances, movies, intramurals (informal team sports) and dozens of other activities.
UNT has more than 400 student organizations, including many intercultural organizations and 41 fraternities and sororities. Leadership and training opportunities are abundant. UNT participates in NCAA Division I athletics and will join Conference USA beginning fall 2013. With seating for nearly 31,000 fans, UNT’s Apogee Stadium has eco-friendly features unlike any collegiate stadium in the nation.
The right college should provide services and resources to help you not only adapt, but thrive. So when you’re looking at colleges, consider resources such as health centers, computer labs, libraries, counselors and tutoring.
Some colleges offer minimal health services. Others have health centers with doctors on call 24 hours; others close at 5 p.m. like doctor’s offices. Depending on the institution, you may receive free medical services, paying only for prescriptions.
UNT’s Health and Wellness Center employs doctors and nurses, provides services such as X-rays and lab tests, and fills prescriptions. The center also houses College Optical Express, the first full-service optical office located on any college campus in the state.
You can take your laptop or personal computer to college to write those late-night papers, but if you don’t own one, you’ll need resources on campus. Most schools have IBM-compatible PCs and Macintosh computers available for student use in open-access labs across campus. Some colleges have computers in residence hall study rooms. Many provide free Internet, wireless and email access.
UNT has 13 general-access computer labs, including one that is open 24 hours a day and six that have Macintosh computers as well as PCs. All residence halls are wired for Internet access, and wireless access is available throughout the main campus and Discovery Park. Two libraries also offer free laptop checkout.
Making the transition from high school to college can be more difficult for some than for others. At some point you may feel the need to talk to a professional therapist in a safe, private environment. Many universities offer counseling services to students — often free of charge.
UNT’s on-campus Counseling and Testing Center offers students eight free counseling sessions per academic year.
Safety and security
As peaceful as college campuses appear, it’s easy to forget that not all campuses are equally safe. Although students want to feel safe on campus, crime may spill over in urban campuses and, of course, can occur anywhere.
Every college is required to publish crime statistics annually, including the number of motor vehicle thefts, burglaries, aggravated assaults, robberies, rapes, murders, liquor violations, drug abuse violations and weapons possessions on campus. Check out the situation at any campus you are considering.
Ask about lighting and the availability of police escort services at night.
UNT’s Eagle Alert system sends voice and text messages to students if there is an emergency or closing affecting people on and around the campus. The campus is well lighted and patrolled by campus police, which can provide students escorts at night for an extra measure of safety. Police also monitor 71 call boxes located throughout campus. UNT’s e-ride system provides on-demand rides from 9 p.m. to 2 a.m. every day in a lift-equipped ADA bus.