Mind Your MANNRS
An important way UC Davis students gain the skills and experience they need is through involvement in campus clubs and organizations.
“There are a number of reasons why students should join clubs and organizations,” said Lili Bynes, co-director of CA&ES Undergraduate Academic Programs. “One is the sense of community that groups provide. Another is professional development opportunities. In personal development, what stands out immediately would be leadership growth and exploring the unknown.”
When students come into the CA&ES dean’s office for academic counseling, they are often encouraged to think about how they spend their extra time. Student organizations—whether to focus on academics, promote professional development, or bond people of similar religious or cultural interests—help students connect in a way that complements the classroom experience and can make them better students.
“The sense of belonging is really important for students,” Bynes said. “Moving from another location to Davis, students need to create a new sense of community. Being around other students with similar interests is something that can be of value to students. It can help them to perform well in their classes if they have some extension of an identity outside the classroom.”
One organization that provides opportunities for professional skill development and networking is the National Society for Multiculturalism in Agriculture, Natural Resources, and Related Sciences (MANRRS). Students in this organization have the opportunity to attend a national conference and compete in contests for cash prizes. Gaby Pedroza, an animal science student and president of the UC Davis chapter of MANRRS, won second place in a public speaking competition earlier this year. Her talk addressed the national conference theme: Embracing today’s challenges to embark on tomorrow’s opportunities.
“I focused my speech on my college journey thus far and how I had to work hard to get to college and stay in college,” Pedroza said. “And also how, thanks to MANRRS, I grew as a person and now know where I want to be and how I will get there.”
- MANRRS Facebook Group
- For more information, contact Catherine Lopez, President