Hello you bright eyed and bushytailed lot.
My name is Andy and like you, I was once a fresher for not one, but two years. I'm currently in my second year studying BSc (Hons) Mathematics and, from my experience, societies are the cornerstone of university life. Nothing can compare to the sheer enjoyment, fulfilment and skills I have received by being a member of various societies and clubs.
For the past year, I was on the committee for the LGBT Society, which became the largest society on campus. This was particularly daunting as our entire committee was new to the roles and responsibilities of up keeping and maintaining a society.
However, we all had one set goal in mind, to raise awareness of LGBT issues and the society as a whole and to have a greater presence within the University.
Therefore, we set off to meticulously plan and organise events to achieve this goal. First off, we held stalls in high visibility areas to raise awareness of LGBT issues, as well as collaborating with other societies, such as Time to Change and the Feminist Society, to show solidarity and support. With the support of the Students' Union, we were successful in establishing more gender neutral toilets and signage throughout The Union building. As a society, we were also involved in preparation and participation in the Manchester Pride Parade.
Next was to create more events and socials for our members so that we could build a better relationship with them. This consisted of a coffee morning, Canal Street pub-crawls, film screenings and much more. We also collaborated with the ‘Alt Societies’ for a Christmas Masquerade Ball.
After all of our hard work we achieved the ‘Most Socially Aware' accolade during the first Societies Awards Ceremony in 2016. Long may our reign continue!
As a member of a society, you not only attend socials but also events such as paintballing, volunteering, society meals, pub quizzes etc., and may be entitled to special discounted rates at certain stores. Some societies have a partnership with establishments, which entitles them to get an increased student discount!
Do you have an interest or hobby that does not seem to be covered by the societies on hand? Why not start your own society! All you need is two committee members (a chairperson and a treasurer) to get your society started.
I would implore you to join as many societies as possible, who knows what you will discover!