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How to Adapt Your Extracurriculars Online During the Coronavirus

MAR 30, 2020 • 10 min read

As the world reacts to the global pandemic of the coronavirus, we are forced to adapt. We find ourselves in a unique position which has its positives and negatives. The world has been tipped into uncertainty, but on the other, we are standing as a united front, sharing hardship and lifting each other up in times of need.

As a student, your traditional approach to extracurriculars has shifted as you reconsider in-person projects and alternative ways to make a difference while boosting your extracurricular profile. Think outside the box and show what an innovator and leader are. Demonstrate your adaptability to challenging and unpredictable circumstances.

Our Crimson extracurricular mentors have been blown away by the clever, innovative and genuinely considerate ideas our students have developed. These students have taken the circumstances presented by this unique time and turned them into possibilities and opportunities to ideate, develop and give back.

Below are a few creative, impactful ideas and projects our students have brainstormed and built under the guidance of their dedicated Crimson ECL mentors.

Humans of the Coronavirus

One student has interviewed citizens from the 25 most affected nations around the world, from Iraq. to China to the USA, gathering their stories.

Juts some of these questions include: How are you feeling? How is the media coverage in your region affecting you and your family? How are you managing self-isolation? How are you managing these periods of change?

The idea behind this project is to offer an online platform to connect in a time of social distancing, and to foster connection between those enduring the same experiences.

Ventilator Fundraising Art Initiative

One Crimson student partnered with a local artist in New Zealand, and commissioned 85 pieces of art relating to the coronavirus. Looking at this through an artist’s eyes, it encourages people to think of the other side of humanity, to see the situation from an alternative perspective.

The student then created a website to host an online auction to sell the collection, the proceeds of which will go toward buying ventilators for the local hospital.

Manufacturing Hand Sanitzer

In a time where cleanliness and hygeine is more crucial and integral to health than ever, the scarcity of hand sanitizer is a growing concern.

A Crimson student recognized a local shortage in hand-sanitizer in their own community and researched how to make it.

The student purchased the contents individually and assembled packs at home. These were then donated to local low-income communities who were struggling to get sufficient supplies during this time of crisis.

Curating a Guide to Online Learning During COVID

As schools close and transition to online classes, the dynamic of learning changes drastically.

Using this situation as an opportunity to adapt and assist, a Crimson student who had extensive online learning experience with Crimson, identified this situation as a way to make a positive change.

This student published an extensive blog on online learning, allowing students and parents to share their tips and experiences. The aim of the blog is to educate students as to how they can improve learning outcomes online and to help parents support their children through access to additional online resources and references.

With ongoing developments in technology, the way we interact with our world is indeed changing. You don’t need to wait until the environment changes to implement extracurriculars online; instead you can utilise online initiatives to stay ahead of the curve.

Don’t Stand By, Stand Up

A Crimson student attended a school where there were many young deaths attributed to alcohol and drug abuse. Acknowledging that perhaps students might listen if the warnings of certain activities came from their peers, they developed a peer-to-peer initiative.

The program involving expert external university drug and alcohol coaches, was conducted online to give students a way to freely access information.

The student also organized a special training program for their school’s student leaders to identify and assist at-risk peers. The program gained media attention, with articles covering the initiative in national newspapers.

Freedom of Religious Expression

A prominent private all-girls high school banned any headwear, including those of religious affiliation. Determined to make change in order to allow students to feel safe at school while wearing religious headwear, a Crimson student created an online petition through change.org.

The petition quickly gained traction and amassed tens of thousands of signatures.

The student was then contacted by the media, which then covered her initiative and gained further support in order to pressure the school to revisit the ruling. As a result - her school has now abandoned the restrictive and discriminatory policy.

Online Newspaper for Youth

A Crimson student developed an online platform to host a youth newspaper for students to write and submit news pieces that affect them directly. All articles go through an editing process and a committee selects the best articles, ending with online publishing.

The selection process encourages the author to think about the most relevant and thought provoking content that will resonate with readers.

The project demonstrated the rewards of considering multiple perspectives on current events.

Internship at an Online Business Media Platform, ‘Unfiltered’

There is no doubt that even before COVID-19, more and more businesses were moving online, and as a result, remote workers are on the rise as geography barriers are eliminated.

A Crimson student worked an internship with the online business media platform Unfiltered - a rewarding and enlightening experience which, as you would expect, was nothing like the standard internship that you would experience in a 9-5 office environment.

The student assisted with writing press releases, content creation and social media exposure. They also received valuable insight into the workings of a startup, and was able to talk about this in their US university application. This student was accepted to Stanford and Princeton!

Internship at Satellite Manufacturer

A Crimson student interested in aeronautical engineering, applied and was accepted to an internship with a rocket company through the Crimson network.

The student gained experience in the operations of the manufacturer and teams that made up the organization.

To top off the experience, they were given the hands-on opportunity to build an online data-visualization tool to help prospective customers estimate their cost savings.

What will your Impact be?

Uncertain times like these ultimately inspire and reveal the creators and entrepreneurs who dare to make a positive change.

If you would like to speak to someone about your extracurriculars or personal projects/initiatives during this time, contact us here to arrange for a Crimson advisor to get in touch.

Our Crimson Admission Support service offers Extracurricular and leadership project planning, execution and reporting as part of the core service. Our holistic approach provides support across all areas of the US and UK university application process. We assist you to find your best-fit university, create a personalised roadmap, ace your standardised tests, craft the perfect essay, build candidacy through extracurriculars, and more.

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