Student Activities Office

Exploring, competing, serving, playing, climbing and worshiping: students in Houghton’s unique setting augment their central educational experience through participation in a vibrant community life. The Student Activities Office seeks to enrich the student experience through a various means. Some of our activities encourage service, some contribute to the educational mission of Houghton College and others are for pure fun. Students have the opportunity to cultivate their leadership skills, to participate in cultural, athletic, co-curricular and spiritual opportunities and to join or lead one of 30+ campus clubs and organizations (see below). In addition to a wide variety of options, Houghton’s 1300 acres of woodland offers rich opportunities for exploring on horseback, cross-country skis and hiking trails. Our ropes and initiatives course is used for physical education, leadership development and draws visitors from around Western New York.

Our rural location both contributes to and necessitates one of the greatest distinctives of our students' experience - a dynamic, residential campus community. It is the goal of the Student Activities Office to offer and oversee a comprehensive and vibrant array of experiences and opportunities which reflect the ethos of our academic community.

Campus Activities Board (CAB)

Coordinated by the Student Activities Office, this board works with groups across campus to coordinate a wide array of quality on-campus entertainment reflecting the Christian character and geographic setting of our community.

Campus Center

The Van Dyk Lounge is first and foremost for the use and enjoyment of Houghton College students, employees, and alumni. The Campus Center lower level has foosball games, pool, and table tennis that are available for college student use. 

Clubs and Organizations

While academic excellence is emphasized at Houghton, we realize the importance of students being involved in activities to complement their classroom education. Clubs and organizations provide opportunities for students to explore their interests and to take leadership roles. By being involved in co-curricular activities, students begin to clarify career goals and to understand how their education can be translated into action.

Student Government Association (SGA)

The SGA, under the leadership of its officers and through its various working committees, provides an opportunity for students to become directly involved in campus decision making. In addition, its members attempt to resolve campus problems and serve as a communication channel between student organizations and faculty, staff, and administration. The Student Government Association creates an atmosphere for the discussion of campus issues that contribute to the growth of each member of the student body.

Student Clubs and Organizations

American Choral Directors Association (ACDA) - works to promote choral singing and helps to organize the development of choral groups of all types in schools, churches, and on campus.

Allegany County Outreach (ACO) - provides opportunities for students to share the love of our Savior Jesus Christ with children throughout our county through establishing and maintaining friendships. The “big brother/ big sister” program is designed to foster relationships between college students and the children of Allegany County. This program includes group events and parties as well as one-on-one involvement of students with their little “brothers” and “sisters.” College facilities and cultural events are also available through invitations to eat together on campus and attend athletic events, plays, and religious programs.

Artist's Guild - fosters an appreciation of the visual arts and their effect on our lives through use of the Chapel Gallery, art displayed in The Coffee House, museum excursions, film showings, and communication with local artists.

Black Heritage Club – enriches the campus through providing events to celebrate cultures represented on campus.

Climbing Club - provides a safe, Christ-oriented atmosphere where climbing, leadership, encouragement and hard skills are developed and promoted both in the gym and off-campus trips.

The Environmental Club - works to encourage awareness and action on campus for environmental issues.

Encore – a student-run theater club open to everyone, produces several shows and theatrical events each year, including skits, one-act plays and full-length productions. Encore also strives for variety in its play selection, performing shows from many different time periods and countries.

Equestrian Society - The purpose of this society is to create a Christian environment in which equestrian students work together to increase public awareness of their curriculum and its services and to enhance opportunities for students and community members.

Gadfly Society - aims to provide a forum for voluntary co-curricular endeavors of interest to philosophy majors, minors and other philosophically-minded persons and to promote awareness of the relevance of philosophical perspectives to issues.

Global Christian Fellowship - GCF’s purpose is to bring the community and campus to a greater understanding of, and commitment to, their place in God’s mission for this world.

Gospel Choir enriches our campus through helping students express our Christian heritage through multicultural fellowship, celebrating the richness of gospel music. Our purpose is not geared only toward entertainment, but it is to expose the student body, faculty, and staff to this style of worship and praise.

Imitators of Christ - promotes nurturing relationships between students and community members for the spiritual growth of those involved.

Intercultural Student Association (ISA) - promotes cultural awareness on campus and aids in the cultural adjustment of international students, third-culture kids and American-born minorities.

Journey’s End Tutors – Houghton students are partnered with refugees that are new to the country through Journey’s End Refugee Services. Volunteer students spend a few hours with refugee families for eight Saturdays each semester. They help these families, especially the children, to learn English and acclimate to the American educational system as well as some life skills.

MercySeat Ministries - In submission to the Holy Spirit and the Word of God, MercySeat ministries seeks to encourage people to passionately pursue God both corporately and individually.

Music Educators Club - acquaints students with the rewards and challenges of music and its teaching in contemporary society and provides information, resources, and exposure to students for professional expertise.

Paddle Sports - seeks to provide recreational opportunities for students that will enhance their college experience.

Psi Chi - a psychology honor society that provides students with learning experiences, work opportunities and summer opportunities in the field of psychology and encourages students to view psychology with a Christian perspective.

Psychology Club - Seeks to encourage students to integrate psychology and the Christian faith, provide learning experiences that will be educationally illuminating, and help prepare students for a future in psychology.

Gold Bar Club (ROTC) - Houghton College Army ROTC is dedicated to training the future leaders of the United States Army as well as training good leaders for Christian service. Army Reserve Officer Training Corp (ROTC) is open to all Houghton College students without a commitment to the US Army for the first two years. After two years (Junior academic status) it is necessary to make a decision whether or not to serve in the US Army.

Salvation Army Student Fellowship - The Salvation Army Fellowship seeks to encourage spiritual growth and commitment to Christian service.

Sigma Zeta - a math and science honor society that encourages and fosters the attainment of knowledge in the natural and computer sciences and mathematics and recognizes the attainment of high scholarship among those in membership.

Ski Club - provides opportunities to novice and experienced skiers throughout western New York.

Society for Human Resource Management-Houghton College Chapter - The purpose of the chapter is to provide students with the opportunity to gain knowledge and insight into the effective management of personnel in the field of Human Resource Management through affiliation with the Niagara Frontier Chapter of SHRM and the National SHRM organization.

Sociology Club - is open to any student who is interested in sociology. It provides learning experiences, service opportunities, and informs students of career opportunities and summer opportunities in the field of sociology.

Teachers for Today and Tomorrow (TOTT) - as scholar-servants we aim to share God’s love by building a support system within the local education community to inform current and future education students about the rewards and challenges of the teaching profession.

Youth for Christ - works to communicate the life-changing message of Christ to every young person in the county through evangelism with the intent to bring the spiritual salvation of Jesus Christ to the youth of the Southern Tier area and to encourage and foster spiritual growth in the tenets of Christianity. Students provide leadership, counsel and organization for Youth for Christ – Campus Life clubs.

Young Life - is a relational outreach to kids, with the message of love and forgiveness of Jesus Christ. Young Life is based on the idea that we, as Christians, need to go on their turf, to go where the kids are. When doing this, we attempt to build relationship with high school students (Young Life) and junior high students (Wyld-life), so that we might earn the right to be heard by them. The goal of this ministry is to introduce kids to Jesus and get them back involved in their local church.

Residence Halls
  • Gillete Event Planning Committee
  • Lambein Event Planning Committee
  • Rothenbuhler Event Planning Committee
  • Shenawana Event Planning Committee
  • Townhouse Leadership Council
  • Boulder (Yearbook)
  • Drawing Board (Student Comic Publication)
  • The Lanthorn (Literary/Art publication)
  • STAR (Student newspaper)

Other Opportunities for involvement

Artist Series - The Houghton College Artist Series features nationally and internationally known artists, groups and productions which vary from year to year.

College Choir – The College Choir is composed of students chosen for musical and vocal competence by audition. Concerts are given each year, including an extended tour during spring break. The choir rehearses daily.

Philharmonia - The Philharmonia is made up of qualified instrumentalists. Representative selections of classical, romantic, and modern literature are performed. Membership is by audition and permission of the conductor.

Symphonic Winds - Symphonic Winds provides students the opportunity to perform significant symphonic band literature. Concerts are performed on and off campus. Membership is open to advanced wind and percussion players and is by audition and permission of the conductor.