When the topic of university is broached, three things instantly come to mind: independence, studies, and socialising. Of course, everyone will prioritise these things differently, but there is no denying we all come to university to do more than just study. One of the best aspects of university life is societies and sports – Southampton boasts an impressive 300+ societies and sports, so there really is something for everyone. I have joined 9 societies, and I’ll be giving you an exclusive insight into what they’re really like.
I’m an Accounting and Finance student, so joining the Business Society and Women in Business was a no-brainer. Women in Business is quite an academic society, providing opportunities to improve your CV and get ahead in establishing your business career through employability workshops and networking opportunities. So far this year, they’ve collaborated with 9 other societies for a Halloween Social. Meanwhile, the Business Society organised a White T-shirt pub crawl for the first social of the year, but due to the late announcement, I’ve heard the turnout wasn’t the best. Of course, there’ll be more socials in the months to come for both of these societies. I’ve also been informed by returning students that the Business Society holds an annual Christmas Ball and Boat Ball, both of which I can’t wait to attend. If this isn’t a good enough incentive to join the society, then what is?
Personally, I’d recommend everyone to join a sports society, whether that be football, tennis or water polo! I’ve joined SULCC, the ladies’ cricket club, and this was certainly a good call. Now, I won’t be surprised if you think joining a sports society isn’t for you if you’re not a budding athlete. When I mentioned getting involved in sports to some of my friends, their horrified expressions made their feelings pretty clear. Here’s the thing though – you can still be part of a sports society without having prior experience or the desire to participate in tournaments. I’d recommend joining just for the socials and Wednesday sports nights. Honestly, I’ve yet to attend a single cricket training session this semester, but, when it comes to SULCC socials, I’ve made it to most. The SULCC social secs, Grace and Huma, definitely deserve a mention, because out of all the societies I’ve joined, cricket has had the best ones, both drinking and non-drinking!
One of the societies which caught my eye at Bunfight was Korfball – I don’t know about you, but I’d never heard of this sport before. A mixed-gender Dutch sport that combines elements of both netball and basketball, it seemed like it could be a great addition to my uni schedule. I’ve definitely had fun at the Tuesday training sessions I attended. Joining the Zumba society has also been worthwhile; there’re 2 weekly classes which are a great way to get in some exercise. I didn’t expect Zumba to organise socials, but was pleasantly surprised to learn that this year, socials are officially a thing for ZumSoc! My friends and I joined other members of the society at Funky Flamingo for the first social this year.
I really loved netball when I was back in school, so I was eager to join a netball team. I’m on the Business Society Netball team, and, despite the name, all courses are welcome to join. We started the year off with an ‘On Wednesdays We Wear Pink’ social, where we played fun drinking games during pres and began to get to know each other before heading to Switch. Halloween saw our next social, this time a mixed social with the business football boys. As for matches, BusSoc Netball has already played a few games against other uni netball teams. Unfortunately, I haven’t been able to make these, but I’ll definitely try to keep my schedule clear for the next ones.
For me, the standout societies have been SUBLDS, the ballroom and Latin dance society, and the Salsa society. Good music, good people, and good times; you definitely don’t want to miss it. Both of these societies offer weekly classes for all levels and abilities. There’s no pressure to attend every class, so you can be as committed as you like. I’m loving learning to dance, so I’m attending classes regularly. Since the start of the semester, SUBLDS has organised a Scoops social, a pub crawl, a quiz night, and a Stags Karaoke social. What’s even more exciting is the regular competitions you can participate in as a member of SUBLDS! This year has started off with Southampton Friendly, and Bath Friendly is right around the corner. I’ve signed up for the Bath comp and honestly can’t wait.
Last but certainly not least, and as you’ve probably guessed, I’ve joined Wessex Scene, a society I was excited to join even before speaking to some of the committees at Bunfight. I’m looking forward to writing for Wessex Scene and I hope you’ll enjoy hearing from me this year.
All in all, I can’t recommend enough joining at least one society to really elevate your university experience. You truly do get so much out of it: friends, skills, connections, fun, and lasting memories. What I will say, though, is that it can get tricky juggling lots of societies whilst also keeping up with uni work and making time to socialise with your friends. I’ve joined 9 societies this year, but I’ll definitely be dedicating more time to my favourites.