Get involved, make campus better

Column by Wesley Robinson

Welcome back, fellow Wildcats! And welcome to all of the incoming freshmen, transfer students, graduate students, faculty, staff and administration.

I’m going to be doing this for a while, so I figure the best way to start the year is to introduce myself. Here is my shot at not coming off as a pretentious, self-righteous jerk.

I have been at UK off and on since the fall of 2003, and have a deep-rooted connection with the university — it’s like a family member of mine, if you will. UK and I are prone to bitter disagreements and long bouts of silence but in the end, we are both here to better our community and our world, so we work together.

At the moment, we are getting along pretty well. Yet, over the course of this academic year, the university and I will enjoy some of the same fights we have endured over the past few years.

The difference is, now I am making a concerted effort to try to make my school better through getting involved in different organizations. I still see the same flaws, and in some ways, being involved has made me aware of many flaws that are less visible on the surface.

My first stint at UK, I was largely apathetic and spent most of my time just hanging around. I went to class, went home, went out a little and that’s it.

After taking some time off, I decided that instead of just visiting UK, I would be part of the university by getting involved. From that involvement, I have met many students with similar convictions working to leave a lasting­ mark on the university through their actions.

I sincerely believe UK has potential to be one of the great institutions in America; it just needs some guidance. That guidance comes from students like you and I who take ownership in the university. Not only must we fight for what we believe, but we must also recognize that we may not see some of the byproducts of our efforts till long after we have left, if at all.

There are so many ways to get involved: fraternities and sororities, Student Government, the Center for Community Outreach, International Student Council and many more. These outlets are healthy options to sharpen and refine one’s personal beliefs while learning about new things to help find the glaring similarities in mankind.

If you get the chance, sit in on a SG meeting and see what it’s about. Go to an NAACP meeting and see what they are doing to better the campus. Volunteer a few hours in the community.

Of course, enjoy the UK basketball, football, socializing and partying, but when you see a problem, see how you can work to fix that problem.