Your time at university is not just about studying, attending lectures and taking exams (Ok, so much for stating the obvious). But really, how much time do students actually spend on stuff that’s making them better, smarter and more awesome while they’re at university?

We’ve previously published data on the importance of doing extracurricular activities. In case you missed it, it came down to this: Do extracurricular activities and employers will love you more. And it’s easy to see why: You gain incredibly valuable experience and develop a much broader skillset than you would if you’d only “eat, sleep, study, repeat”.

Now, since we can all agree that it’s important, we thought it would be interesting to see how much time students actually spend on their extracurricular activities:

First, the big picture: On average, Dutch students spend 6.17 months of their time in uni on extracurricular activities. This comes down to 1/12th (or 8.33%) of the average total study duration. Just to be clear, these are 6.17 months spent on activities that are worth mentioning on a CV, like being member of the board of a student association or sports club.

Now, even more interestingly, what does this look like per university:


As you can see, Maastricht tops the chart, spending almost 8 months on extracurricular activities, which is really impressive! What’s most striking however, is that the students at the Vrije Universiteit spend 38% less time on extracurricular activities than the average Dutch student. That’s a pretty big difference and keeps us guessing why… Are VU students not aware of the importance of improving their CV like this? Is their university holding them back by being too strict on things like grades or study pace? Or could it be, as discussed in this article, that students focus on getting their degree ASAP, cause it’s just too expensive - due to the recent policy changes regarding student loans - to study any longer than needed when you’re also living in Amsterdam.

In the end, how you spend your time is (obviously) totally up to you. However, just remember that it’s wise to be active next to your studies and to learn valuable new skills that study books won’t teach you. A nice start could be to change some of your ‘chill time’ into ‘skill time’. #NetflixAndSkill :)

Interested in which companies are interested in your extracurricular activities?