Megan, a valuable member of the team here at Futureboard, fully supports getting involved in a society and believes the benefits go way beyond the specific knowledge you learn in whichever group you join.
She was a member of the Dance society at Goldsmith’s university and explained to me what she got out of the experience.
‘‘Joining the dance society was great for me as I was in a role that nurtured a lot of skills that have proved valuable beyond university life. As well as taking part in all of the dancing, I got involved in all of the behind-the-scenes work of the society; arranging social events and group activities as well as the preparation and planning for the Goldsmith’s dance show. It really helped me to develop a range of transferable skills such as planning, organisation and influencing. I successfully altered the forms of dance we took part in, making the society feel more contemporary and appealing to new members.
When it came to doing interviews after university I found that my experiences had given me a lot to talk about when faced with competency questions. I could draw on lots of different situations to discuss and so felt really well prepared. ’’
By joining a society, you can really show off your drive and enthusiasm. There is a lot of value in being proactive; you can get yourself out of the house while at the same time build up a repertoire of skills for impressing at an interview for a top job. Real-life examples make all the difference in competency interviews and you can start accumulating them by joining a society.
As well as employability benefits, joining societies offers you the chance to meet lots of like-minded people who (obviously) have at least one of the same interests that you do. Societies frequently organise relevant social events, such as movie screenings by the film appreciation society, plus the usual nights out or discounted restaurant visits. You could meet life-long friends in more of a structured way than in the hustle and bustle of the Halls of residence. This could be particularly good if you are slightly shier around larger, rowdier groups.
Joining a society can cause its own kind of anxiety as they, on occasions, seem cliquey to an outsider or newly joining fresher but don’t let this put you off. Give it a go and if you find it really isn’t your type of thing or you don’t get on with the other members as well as you thought you would, you can always drop out and join another one. It’s a win-win situation so join a society today – what have you got to lose?
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