The benefits of joining a society

Posted on: 7 February 2024 by Laura Reynolds in 2024 posts

Students from the drama society, LUST, posing for a photograph
A group photograph of LUST members, taken by student, Henry Sinclair @sinclair_cinema

History and Politics BA student, Laura Reynolds, discusses the importance of societies at University and her experience joining LUST (Musical Theatre Society) in this blog post!

Trying to balance university with a social life, sport and societies can be incredibly difficult and I think there is a big misconception that to succeed at university you have to sacrifice your other interests. Whilst the degree is what we are all here for, I think that societies and sports can help with accademic success. I myself have been a member of LUST (Musical Theatre Society) since the first semester of my first year. While we are a more full-on society, rehearsing three nights a week has given me a creative outlet and a chance to take my mind off my degree, so that when I return to my work I look at it with a fresh perspective. It has also given me the opportunity as a first year to meet people who have the same interests as me outside of history and politics.

I am a firm believer in the fact that you learn so much more at university than the content of your degree, including the importance of maintaining a work life balance. Over the course of my degree, I realised that my motivation for doing university work during the day was that I could go to rehearsals at night. I know that I thrive from being busy and working under time pressures, and can reward myself by spending the night rehearsing. A day in my life might look like: lectures and university work 9-11, allowing myself a break before working at the guild 12-4, and then another two hours of university work before rehearsals at night. Of course, it is also important to give yourself days to just relax, however a schedule like this keeps me motivated to get everything done in the time I have allocated.  

A History and Politics student, Laura Reynolds, performing with LUST

Laura Reynolds performing with LUST. photography by Henry Sinclair @sinclair_cinema 

Societies and sports are a great way to get to know people not only on your course but across the university and are a chance to dedicate time away from your degree. Participation in societies and sports also extends beyond the activity itself by giving you the opportunity to stand for elections to be part of the committee. This is an opportunity I have taken myself and it has allowed me to feel that I am giving back to the society which has helped me through my degree, and it has also given me a lot of transferable skills such as leadership, presenting, time management and organisation that employers like to hear about in interviews. This all being said, I would highly recommend this Feel-Good February exploring other interests outside of your degree. If societies and sports are not something that interest you, it is so important to find an outlet away from your degree, as without down time burnout is almost inevitable. So, I would encourage you to use your time at university to study something you are passionate about and also to explore different societies and sports to find out what interests you outside of academia.