When you first head off to uni, it can be difficult to know what to expect. Before making the time commitment of joining a society or team, you’ll need to understand what your workload will be like. With so much going on, it can be difficult to know what to prioritise, and how to decide which societies to join – you won’t want to join every society going as you won’t have any time for your studies!
Jack Webster, a third year law student at the University of Leeds, has put together some tips and advice on how to balance your social life, societies and studies whilst at university.
It can be somewhat overwhelming moving to a new city for university, not knowing many people and trying to find your feet. Joining a society is the perfect way to make friends and feel part of a community. Having joined the American Football team in my second year at university, I made over 40 new friends and was welcomed into a new family. Joining the Leeds Gryphons American Football team also made me more active - with training at least two times a week, not only did joining improve my lifestyle, but I had more opportunities to go out, have fun and make friends.
Although I had settled comfortably into university in my first year, joining a new society expanded my friendship group and my social calendar - now there were always teammates around campus that I could meet for a chat or arrange a drink with. Not only this, but having like-minded friends motivating you to go the gym and keep active really does help.
It might seem like a lot of work to balance your social life, societies and studies, but it doesn’t have to be. As long as you don’t devote all your time to just one aspect of your uni life, you will be fine. You can balance this by allotting your time to particular activities - go to lectures, seminars and finish any required revision and coursework during the day, attend society sessions a few times a week, and then make time for your friends in the evening. You might even find that the people you meet in societies become your closest friends, meaning you can train and socialise at the same time!
In this respect, joining a society isn’t only beneficial for your social life, but also your studies as it can help to keep you in a routine. Not only this, but acting as club treasurer has taught me core skills, such as organisation, communication and teamwork, which will be invaluable as I start to apply for jobs in the future. I couldn’t recommend it highly enough.
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