October 6, 2018, by Anjni
How to Get Involved in Societies (And Stay Involved!)
So fresher’s week has come and gone and with it society meet & greets have all but ceased, with a mere handful continuing on into the following week. As such, you may feel like it’s much to late to get involved or approach societies and really intergrate now that such welcome events are over. But I’m here to tell you that this isn’t the case, and that if you have missed out on these events it isn’t too late to start get involved as we enter the third week of the new academic year. So here’s my guide of how to get involved in societies (and stay involved!) despite local pressures, looming deadlines and the monster that is fresher’s flu!
Follow Societies on Their Social Media Pages
Probably the easiest way to stay in the loop with any societies that you’re interested in is to find them on social media and keep up with their posts as this is where they tend to advertise their events, meetings and socials, updating their audiences of time, place and session content. So regardless as to whether you missed their first official welcome event/meet and greet, it’ll still be possible for you to drop by and join them for their next event. If you are unsure of the name of their social media accounts, you can always browse the StrudentsUnion Website (https://www.su.nottingham.ac.uk/) for your society of interest and more often than not, they usually list their social media pages in their description bar or home page.
Drop Societies an Email
If social media isn’t for you, or if you prefer to ask specific questions about getting involved, you can always email your society of interest (again email addresses can be found on the SU Website linked above) and a committee member will be more than happy to answer your queries, provide tips and direct you in the best possible direction. This is a great way to get involved with a society and by reaching out you can get to know committee members personally and actually end up forming networking connections too.
Buy a Membership through the SU Website
Now for those of you that feel you may have missed the chance at nabbing societal memberships at freshers fair or meet & greets – fret not! The great thing about society memberships is that you can always purchase them through the SU Website throughout the year. Most memberships are around £5.00 or so for the whole year (September – June), with some being slightly more depending on the society, and some even being completely FREE! Now whilst memberships are not always a necessity when it comes to getting involved in societies (especially in the case of the latter where the joining free is nul), memberships are extremely useful in that they give you access to material that non-members don’t necessarily have. For example, I know many societies send members regular emails/newsletters to inform them of upcoming meetings or socials as well as opportunities like networking events. This is a great way for you to stay involved with a society and remain up to date with everything that they have planned for the upcoming year.
Keep your eyes peeled and stay active! Lots of societies arrange all sorts of activities throughout the year, collaborating with one another, the student body and just the community in general, so no doubt you’ll see various clubs flitting about throughout the year in halls, at Portland and even up in the Med School. A lot of them paste up posters and will even pop into lectures to raise awareness and will tell you a bit more about where to find them/what they do at the start of the year if you missed out on seeing them at their first meet and greet or taster event.
Everyone knows that the first few weeks of uni can get ridiculously hectic with so much going on, and finding time to go to or approach all the socieites you’re interested in in person can be tough when you’re trying to juggle everything, and it doesn’t help if your schedule is ram-packed. But here at Nottingham it is so easy to immerse yourself and get involved in societies a few weeks down the line, or even months later. Getting involved – and staying involved! – in a society is a great way to meet people, develop skills, showcase talents and just have fun outside of your course, and being part of something outside your scholastic duties really enriches your experience of university life beyond just academia. We may be approaching week three but it’s never too late to start getting involved with something – anything! – and just giving it a go, because that’s what the university experience is all about.