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How To Start A Society At University

Societies at university are a great way to make friends and launch yourself into the uni experience.

There are societies available for everyone, whether you’re looking for fellow music fans or Harry Potter nerds, you’ll find someone with similar interests to you.

If the society doesn’t exist, that’s when your own work comes in – most universities allow students to set up their own. 

The chances are, there will always be other students interested in what you enjoy, so take the leap and start a society yourself.

There are a number of things you need to do before starting your society, so we’ve created a step by step guide to introducing your society to your university.

1. Ask your student union

Your Student Union needs to authorise the society, it’s likely it’ll be approved but depending on what it entails, there may be guidelines to follow.

There may already be plans to launch a similar group, and they’ll have all the details before you take the next step.

Try and get some rough numbers drawn up before you go to the SU so you can give a more accurate pitch. 

2. Spread the message

Before your first event, you need to make sure as many people know about the society as possible.

Posters are the best way to spread the message around campus to others, and with online printing, it’s quick and easy to do yourself. If you manage to arrange it early, you can even share the details at the freshers fair. 

3. Organise your first meeting

Once it’s time to launch the meeting, pick a date, time and location and make sure everyone knows.

As you explain the details to the society, it’s essential to tell your fellow students what is expected of them.

Don’t make it too strict, after all, you’re there to have fun – but you will need help to run the society.

Study International encourages students to build a committee, there will always be people who are interested in helping. Collect volunteers and allocate roles including president, secretary and treasurer. 

4. Think about expenses

Consider how you plan to cover the costs of the society, not everything will be pricey, but some things may need funding.

The Guardian explains that most universities will offer a start-up fund to get the society going. It is also encouraged that societies try to raise their own money, particularly if you have the right strategies.

Find out what your university offers when it comes to grants and sponsorships. 

5. Plan events and have fun! 

Mostly, the important part of a university society is to make friends and have fun.

Allow your members to contribute ideas and come up with plans, then implement them. Do fun activities relating to your society and keep on top of the events.

The more you do, the more likely people are going to hear about the group. 

Once you’ve done your first year with the new society, make plans for how you’re going to promote it to newbies the following year.

Keep it growing – and make sure you do an in-depth handover to pass on the responsibilities once you finish your time in education.