As students, we all love to get the most out of things, it’s a bit like scraping as much sauce as possible from your pasta sauce jar or asking every store you visit if they do student discount. It’s hard to believe that university flies by especially when you’re sat in lecturers that never seem to end but you’ll be surprised by how many people regret not getting involved at uni, giving you all the more reason to make most of the opportunities available to you.

There’s so much more to being a student than studying. You only need to walk around freshers fair to see the huge range of different societies on offer from sports to dance, media, cooking, faith oh and did I mention quiditch! Along with societies there are many other opportunities you can get involved with like volunteering, working for the students union, becoming a course rep or a student ambassador and that’s just a few things, the list goes on. Whatever point you’re at in your studies it’s never too late to try something new.  First year in particular is a great time to explore, find new interests and to make friends with people from all across the uni who enjoy doing the same things as you.

So much to do but too little time?  Sometimes it feels like there’s too much going on and the thought of it all just makes you want to nap. It’s common to end up thinking to yourself “I would, but I just don’t have enough time” making it tempting to take the easier option and just not get involved.  However, through joining a society or a getting a job in the students union you could improve your time management skills and learn how to make sure you always leave enough time for work and more importantly, for yourself.

Along with improving your time management skills there are a whole host of other benefits to taking part in opportunities like these.  For example, by joining a sports team you can build a close network of friends and gain key team-working skills and when you’re not playing sport you can enjoy regular socials with all of your team mates.  All good for the CV of course but you maybe you should leave out the time you wore a bin bag for your social! You could even take up a committee position as captain or treasurer which would hugely boost your confidence.  The great thing about uni is you have a real chance to step outside of your comfort zone and possibly uncover strengths that you never knew you had.  Taking part in opportunities like these can also help you to break up your time ensuring it’s not all, study, study, study!

You can shape so much of your university experience, maybe you had the chance to do something you’ve always wanted to do, whether that was trying a new sport, being part of exciting projects or even achieving things that you never thought you would.  So join that society you signed up to at freshers fair but never actually went to, grab those unique opportunities and make your university experience your own!

Monica Jinabhai

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