APPLEGATE: Extracurriculars can help students build new skills and gain experiences

Published 12:00 pm Wednesday, August 31, 2022

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It’s hard to believe that we are already at the start of the school year. While we have all taken the summer to enjoy our well-deserved time off with friends and family, we are more than ready to be back in the classrooms, learning alongside our peers and teachers. As families settle back into school and begin the 2022-23 academic year, we encourage students to take hold of the opportunities Niles Community Schools has to offer, joining extracurricular activities, clubs and programs as soon as they can to further kick the year off to an exceptional start. 

At Niles Community Schools, we pride ourselves in the abundance of extracurriculars we offer to students at any grade level. Each extracurricular program or activity highlights the passions students have and embodies the values our Vikings hold. Through every opportunity, whether it be participating in our athletic program, an academic organization, or signing up for a fun, school organized club, students can gain additional skills and experiences outside of the classroom, all of which further adds to their academic careers and success at Niles Community Schools. 

In our athletic program, students can participate in a wide variety of sports all year long. From soccer and football, to baseball, basketball, swimming, cross country and more, each sport is based on teamwork and collaboration. As practices have started this summer and will continue to pop up throughout the course of the year, our students individually focus on the skills they have and how they can improve during team and outside practices, so that when it comes to game day, our student-athletes are working together towards a positive outcome. Using goal setting and teamwork, our teams excel both on and off the field. 

Skills based in teamwork are not just for sports, however. We offer a range of clubs and programs where students collaborate to reach the same goal. Take for instance our phenomenal band program, or our dynamic stage crew, both drastically different activities where students work together to achieve success. Participating in other clubs, like Key Club, Student Council, language clubs, yearbook, Future Farmers of America, National Honor Society and more, allows students to build upon the skills they already have, but further enhance traits like responsibility, leadership, commitment and reliability, all of which are some of the values that make up a Viking. 

Joining extracurriculars further demonstrates a student’s will to learn and explore new topics and lessons, as well as their dedication to growing in their academic careers. Participating in a variety of extracurriculars can provide a well-rounded experience for a student both in school and within the community, building a skillset that will prepare them for life outside of NCS. Therefore, joining extracurriculars early gives students the necessary time to explore their options and start adding to their Niles toolbox, while also building friendships that can last throughout the school year, or even a lifetime. 

As we begin practices and prep for upcoming school events, consider pushing yourself to try something new and join a club, program, or sport today – whether you’re a student or a community member, as our community features plenty of opportunities for residents to get out there and explore. For more information about the extracurriculars we offer, head to our website at