The Benefits of Joining a Society
University can be a daunting endeavour. Coming to (usually) a completely new town/city, not really knowing what to expect, and the challenge of meeting new people and making friends are all part and parcel of the initial struggles for freshers. Luckily, pretty much everyone is in the same boat, and there is a potentially universal solution to these problems. In this blog post, we will discuss why joining a society could be one of the best things you do at uni!
Finding the right one
With the large list of societies to join, it most definitely won’t be possible to be part of each and every single one you may want to – that is, without sacrificing on what you’re really here to do (study!). That’s why it is important for you to make sure you carefully choose which one(s) are right for you. It is down to you to make the decision on this. But, make sure to join societies where you think you would best fit in.
- Do you play a particular sport (eg football, rugby, hockey)?
- Do you have a certain interest (eg singing, dancing, cocktails)?
- Do you identify with a particular faith or religion (eg Afro-Caribbean, Christianity, Hindu)?
- Do you want to add something extra to your academia (eg finance and investment, economics, architecture)?
These are all worthwhile considerations. Ideally, you want to join a society from which you will both enjoy and derive the most value, without becoming over-committed to the point where it will affect your other pursuits. Nonetheless, all these types of societies will give you a chance to develop your skills further and likely boost your employability.
Health & Wellbeing
As mentioned previously, one of the main benefits of joining a society is the chance to develop your skills and abilities. But, along with this, there are many other positives too. Firstly, by joining a sport/activity-based society/club, you will have the (obvious) advantage of keeping active and healthy. Sometimes uni work can be overwhelming. Everyone loves to take a ‘5-10 minute’ break between studying (let’s be honest, these 5-10 minute breaks usually extend to at least 30-40mins). What better way to spend this (extended) break-time than getting out and about! In these situations, it is also important for students to look after, not only their physical health but also their mental health. Exercise of any sort has been proven to improve both these aspects. And, there is no other place you would want to engage in such activities than the best university in the world for sport!
Meeting New People and Making Connections
Societies are also the perfect way to meet new people, and that too, who have similar interests as you. This is a great way to meet like-minded people. It is, therefore, a perfect way to break that awkward barrier of trying to make new friends. Meeting people through societies is not only a way to interact with people who share similar interests and passions, but it also gives you the opportunity to meet people outside of your course, in different disciplines, helping you with your networking skills and making connections which could be useful in the future.
Do Something Different, Develop a New Skill
Maybe you’ve always wanted to try something new, but never really had the chance to do so. Say you’re studying Law, but are not too keen on your debating abilities. Joining the debate society could be the ideal method for you to gain this vital skill for your future career in the courtroom. It is not necessary to have existing knowledge before joining a society. It could be something completely unrelated to your current skill set, but, by being proactive, you are not only benefiting yourself in the present, but also your future self.
You could also be presented with the option of being more than just a member by joining the society committee. Taking an active role in running aspects of a society can give you the perfect boost to your CV. Whether it is being the president to display your leadership skills, being the events coordinator to show your planning and organisation, or being the media coordinator to provide you with an outlet to display your creativity and marketing abilities, there is bound to be something for you to get involved in.
So, hopefully, this post has given you some reassurance that things will be okay at uni, you will meet new people and make new friends, and you can get involved and do things you enjoy. These are just some of the many benefits of joining a society. Maybe you already attended the societies bazaar last weekend (in which case this blog may be completely useless to you, and that’s a good thing 😊) and so you have begun looking at what societies you want to join. If not, what are you waiting for!
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