Students, faculty, and staff gather on the North Campus Diag in Ann Arbor, MI on August 31, 2012 to celebrate the beginning of a new semester and the various opportunities (and swag) that the College of Engineering offers.Photo: Joseph Xu, Michigan Engineering Communications & Marketing

Being one of 40,000 plus students can be daunting, but joining student organizations can introduce your student to a community of people pursuing similar hobbies and interests. Not only do they gain lifelong friends and unforgettable memories, but they cultivate real-world skills—and have fun at the same time.

Identity-Based Orgs

Michigan Engineering has a variety of unique organizations that celebrate the diversity and social identities of our student body. Cultural or Ethnic Orgs offer a chance to connect with the community to offer support and alliance. The office of Multi-Ethnic Student Affairs will help keep your student informed about the events and active orgs on campus, and the Spectrum Center focuses on gender identity to help your student feel comfortable in their own skin. U-M also has a diverse range of religious and spiritual groups available to all students.

Identity-based orgs are also great opportunities for international students to feel closer to home, despite being thousands of miles away. Visit a list of International Student Orgs to explore the many options your student has.

Design, Test, Build Orgs

RJ Nakkula, BME BSE Student, and Jae Nam, Ross Business Administration Student, adjust the chain that controls the rotation of the Woven Wind team wind turbine blades at the Wilson Center on March 30, 2013.Photo: Joseph Xu, Michigan Engineering Communications & Marketing

The design, test and build organizations at Michigan Engineering offer your student the opportunity to get hands-on experience while still in college. With more than 50 teams in the Wilson Student Team Project Center, students can experience hands-on development, fabrication and develop a well-rounded approach to the engineering system. From Solar Car to BLUELab, the center furnishes groups with an opportunity to interact, share ideas and showcase their projects.

Many students in the center also participate in the Multidisciplinary Design Program, which gives students real experience solving real problems by encouraging teamwork in different specialties.

Professional & Academic Orgs

Being in an academic or professional organization is certainly a resume booster, but it’s more than that. Joining a professional or academic organization is the perfect way to showcase leadership, expertise and commitment to excellence, and it can truly help your student make lasting connections with like-minded people. Most of all, it’s a chance to demonstrate commitment to engineering by giving back to the community through tutoring, mentoring or industry sessions. Find out what orgs or societies might be of interest to your student.

Greek Life

One of the university’s longest traditions, Greek Life will welcome you into a family away from home, creating opportunities and friendships that will last for years to come. The legacy of Greek life at U-M dates back to 1845, when two national fraternities established chapters in Ann Arbor. Today, almost 5,000 students are involved in the Greek Community, with many unique and culturally diverse fraternities and sororities available to anyone.

Music

Undergraduate Engineering and Michigan Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (M-STEM) Academy member Sam Wilkins performs a classical violin piece at the M-STEM closing ceremonies talent show in the basement of Bursley Hall in Ann Arbor, MI on August 3, 2012. The M-STEM Academy spans the first two years and includes a pre-freshman summer transition program, customized advising, career guidance, academic learning enrichment activities, and assistance in obtaining a paid professional summer internship or research opportunity.Photo: Joseph Xu, Michigan Engineering Communications & Marketing

With a campus shared with the School of Music, Theatre & Dance and a town dedicated to local artists, the college is surrounded by chances to get involved with music and there are plenty of performances to attend.

Michigan Engineers comprises more than one-third of the Michigan Marching Band, and students interested in playing percussion, brass and woodwinds or being a flag bearer are encouraged to audition and join this musical legacy.

Arts & Culture

As one of Michigan’s cultural hotspots, U-M students can take advantage of film festivals, art fairs and award-winning theatre just minutes away from campus. Located in the heart of downtown Ann Arbor, the historic Michigan Theatre is a mecca of culture. You can catch organ performances, live speakers, current movies and concerts — plus the annual Ann Arbor Film Festival and TED talks. Browse local museums and galleries or research local performing arts for when you and your student explore Ann Arbor together!