Societies can be a big part of student life and can be a great way to meet new people as well as become closer with course mates or flat mates. At the beginning of each term, my university would hold a big event where all committees would go and set up a stall to try and encourage students to join. At the end of the week the societies would advertise Give It A Go (GIAG) events to give a taster of what the society had to offer.  

During university I made use of all of these GIAG events to find a society to join, from karate to yoga. One society that I decided to stick with was Biology Society (BioSoc) which was a group that was aimed at students in the faculty of biology and planned both academic and social events for its members. I am so glad I joined this society in my first year because it really allowed me to form deep connections with people on my course, as well as giving us fun events to go to.  

One of the society events that I went on was a trip to Prague, because booked as a group package this was much cheaper than it would be to do individually. Society trips aren’t like school trips, you have the freedom to go along to what the society has suggested or go off and do things you’re interested in! This trip to Prague was probably one of the highlights of my university experience because the trip was stressfree with everything being organised by the society and allowed me to become friends with many different people 

It was while we were on this trip that me and my friends were approached by the current president of BioSoc and asked to put ourselves forward for the elections for the next year. Me and one other friend decided to do this since we had enjoyed all the events the society had organised so far. We were both elected as social secretaries and in second year worked together to create a wide range of social events for our members, this included Attenborough and Chill where we would show screenings of David Attenborough documentaries with snacks, nights out and even a week-long event focused on helping the university become an eco-friendly campus. 

Pictured: A photo of a few members of the BioSoc Committee at the sign-up event 2018featuring a very special guest.  

Being on the committee really helped me to gain valuable transferable skills for the workplace, including time management, teamwork skills and using social media to advertise our events. It also allowed me to learn from the other members of the committee who were older – they were able to give me tips about modules I had picked, dissertation titles and assessment centers when applying for jobs.  

To see the kinds of events BioSoc has done you can check out their Instagram page (@LeedsBioSoc) or their Facebook page (Leeds BioSoc) 

Written by Abby (University of Leeds Graduate)