By Will, Civil Engineering
College of Engineering and Physical Sciences, University of Birmingham
Hi, I’m Will and I’m a third year MEng Civil Engineer. I’m a member of the Civil Engineering Society (CivSoc) and the Music Society. I am the current social secretary (social sec) for CivSoc and I play with the Music Society’s brass band.
CivSoc is the society that brings Civil Engineers together to have fun, go out and do other things like play sport against other societies in the Campus League. We also run industrial events, including support workshops for interview preparation and guest lectures from alumni and the Institution of Civil Engineers and run site visits to places you’d never normally be able to go by yourself. Brilliantly, it’s all run by students for students, which means that everything is open to all and run in students’ interest.
The Music Society runs a huge number of ensembles and I’m a member of the brass band which rehearses once a week. It’s been a fantastic opportunity to meet people from lots of different courses and year groups, while being united by the common ground of being brass players. Like many societies, socialising is a big part and we very often go to the pub after our rehearsals for a drink and a chat. We play in an annual competition called UniBrass which is contested against a number of other university brass bands, which is not just a brilliant aim point for our year, but a fantastic day out.
Having been a member of both Music Society and CivSoc since first year, I have benefitted from the events that they organise. I have been elected social sec for both my second and third years. Organising social events has developed my organisational and leadership skills, both in planning (such as liaising with venues to organise bar crawls) and running events (leading 70 people on a bar crawl isn’t necessarily easy!). CivSoc have done two bar crawls so far this year, both were a great laugh, and we’ve had some equally fun sober socials as well. We’ve got a pub golf bar crawl planned and coming soon, as well as a site visit to the M42 motorway upgrade project.
Being a society member is a brilliant way to meet people that are interested in the same things as you and make brilliant new friends. Not only that, but you can benefit from the events they organise to gain from new experiences both academic and not, and develop yourself by becoming a committee member and leading a society and shaping their offerings for your fellow students.