Want to get involved with societies, but don’t know where to start? Let The Print help you out…
September is now well underway, and that can only mean one thing – Fresher’s Week. The infamous week where first years let loose like they never have before, second years come back experts of the dos and don’ts, and third years are faced with the brutal reality that in 9 months time, university will all be over.
One of the highlights of Fresher’s Week is undoubtedly the Fresher’s Fair, a two day phenomenon that is the best way to find out what our brilliant university has to offer. Stalls are spread out across campus, allowing you to find your bearings whilst strolling through the mirage of society members and students (not to mention picking up loads of freebees – pizza and baked goods included). There is always so much going on, so here is a guide to the Freshers Fair that should help you get the most out of the experience!
1). Definitely don’t give Fresher’s Fair a miss. You might think that reading the list of societies on the QMSU website will be enough for you to decide, but it won’t. Go to the stalls and find out from current members what it’s really like to be a part of that society face to face. They’ll be able to tell you things a website can’t.
2). Go with a friend. Even if it’s your new flatmates who you just met, it’s much more reassuring to go around with a few people. If you’re nervous to sign up to and try a society out yourself, you can persuade your new friends to come with you (and vice-versa).
3). Make sure to take your time. Fresher’s Fair can get very busy so there’s lots of people packed into small spaces. It can be tempting to give up and rush your way through it so you can go and get a Nando’s for lunch, but you might miss out on finding a society you didn’t even know existed.
4). Don’t be scared to sign up for things. Almost all of the stalls will just ask you to leave your email with them so that they can send you a welcome email. This usually includes details to their taster sessions or the like, so don’t feel like signing up will be a huge commitment. You have the chance to go and try it out, even if you change your mind later.
5). Don’t think you can’t sign up to something. Just because you aren’t doing a Law degree, it doesn’t mean you can’t be part of the Law Society, and the same applies to so many academic societies. Most of them welcome everyone, and even encourage people from other schools of study to join and learn more about their interests.
6). You don’t have to have played a sport before to join it. Don’t think that because you weren’t in the firsts Netball or Rugby team at school, you won’t be good enough to join. A lot of the sports societies have multiple competitive teams and fun, social teams so there’s room for everyone. Don’t dismiss the idea of joining a team because tryouts scare you! Some teams, like Cheerleading, don’t have tryouts and accept everyone.
7). Look out for freebies. Fresher’s Fair is a great place to collect tons of free things, including a booklet of vouchers to use at the local Weatherspoons, discounts on QM merchandise from the campus shops, as well as free pizza slices from the Dominos stall!
8). Check out Library Square as well as the stalls. Lots of societies and sports teams do fun demonstrations in the square throughout the day. You might see something you think is cool, or want to try something that looks like a fun challenge.
So, take it from a third-year veteran, making the most of Fresher’s Fair is a great way to start of your journey at university. Sign up to as many societies as you want and make the most of the taster sessions available. The more things you try, the more likely you are to find a society/societies that suit you well. From yoga, to Harry Potter, to coding, to beard appreciation, QM has a society for everyone, and if you do Fresher’s Fair right, you’re guaranteed to find it.
If you fancy getting a head start on finding out what societies QM has to over, take a look at the full list here.
You can also find a complete list of the club sports here, but don’t forget rule #1!
Image: QMSU.org (edited by Blanca Gonzalez Alba)