College is a time to learn and grow -- both in and out of the classroom.  And the more inclined you might become to try new things, the longer you spend on campus. Taking on a college leadership role can, plain and simply, be one of the best ways to challenge yourself and learn some valuable skills that you can use both during and after your college years. Being a resident adviser (RA) can be a great way to build up your leadership skills while there are lots of pros and cons. You'll learn how to work with a team, mediate conflicts, build community, help people in need, and generally be a resource for your friends and neighbors. All, of course, while having your own room and earning some extra cash. 2. Run for student government. You don't have to run for student body president to make a difference on your campus -- or to learn some important leadership skills. Consider running for something smaller, like a representative for your Greek house, residence hall, or cultural organization.  You'll have the opportunity to watch leadership in action (including the good, the bad, and the ugly) during meetings even in case you are the shy type.

Opportunities for college leadership

Consider running for a leadership role in a club you're involved with in case you'd like to get some college leadership experience but don't want to do something campus-wide. You can take your ideas for what the club should be like, turn them into reality, and get some great leadership experience in the process. "Going Greek" may have been one of the best decisions of your time in college. So why not give back a little and assume some kind of leadership role within your Greek house? Think about your strengths, what you'd like to contribute, and what you'd like to learn -- and then talk with your brothers and/or sisters about how best to do so. Chair, start, or help organize a community service project. You may not have the time to assume a leadership role for the entirety of the academic year. That doesn't mean, of course, that you can't do anything! Consider organizing some kind of community service project that is a one-time gig, perhaps in honor of a holiday (like Martin Luther King Jr. Day). You'll get the experience of planning, organizing, and implementing a major event without having it take over your entire semester. Take a leadership role on a sports team or in the athletic department. Sports may be a big part of your college life, which also means that you don't have time for much else.  Incorporate your athletic involvement with your desire for some leadership experience in that case. Is there a leadership role you can take on your team? Or is there something in the athletic department you can do that can help you build up your skill set? Consider working on campus in an office that promotes student leadership.