“Student groups are the best bit of Uni. I'm not just saying that; I am certain that your best memories will be of things you did in societies. Things you never expected to do, never expected to be interested in, and never knew existed. There's always something new going on, and the people are always friendly and welcoming. My only regret is not doing even more than I already do.”
- Steven Lowes, Academic Societies Rep 2017-18 and Societies Committee Chair 2018-19
"DUCK has been the highlight of my university experience. I have been involved since my first year, and it has been incredible to raise money for wonderful charities locally, nationally and internationally. I have met some fabulous people along the way and have learned so much about my leadership and teamwork skills as well. There are so many ways to get involved from attending a club night, taking part in one of our hitches, to volunteering abroad in our international expeditions. If you’re keen to get involved behind the scenes that is amazing as well! Come chat to us at the fresher’s fair to find out more."
- Rosie Trainor, DUCK Chair
Have a sporting interest? There’s a good chance you can do it in Durham. Team Durham supports students to compete at a national level, through coaching, training facilities, and lifestyle management, and have consistent success at national competitions. But if you like your sport a little more casual, you could also join one of your college’s teams.
"The best thing about DST is definitely the variety – there really is something for everyone! Whether you want to be involved onstage or behind the scenes, it’s super easy to get involved and there’s so much you can try, from acting to producing to technical theatre and more! Our productions are really varied too (ranging from musical theatre to devised pieces to new writing) so there's a theatre company for just about everything, and with around 100 productions each year, there’s always something going on. DST is such a wonderful community, so I would really recommend getting involved and trying something new!”
- Sophie Washington-Sare, DST Public Relations Officer
“I signed up for Durham Otters (a project run by SCA) at the Freshers’ Fair three years ago, and have rarely missed a session since. I honestly can’t think of a better way to spend a Monday evening! Catering for those in the community with mental or physical illnesses of all ages, Durham Otters has introduced me to a fantastic group of people – service users and volunteers alike.”
- Iona Golby, SCA Project Leader
“We’re here to help you with everything from individual guidance to talks and group workshops, vacancies and events. You can find us in the Palatine Centre in Durham. We’re open daily from 09:00-17:00. It’s never too early (or too late) to come and meet us, and there are lots of opportunities for new students at all levels! Can’t get to the Careers Centre? Use our online resources available here. By registering with your Durham email, you can practice online aptitude tests here. We also have advisers linked to each subject department and provide a range of central support.”
- Chris Davison, Deputy Director/Careers Adviser
“Freshers’ Fair can seem a bit overwhelming at first, but signing up to several music societies was probably one of the best decisions I’ve ever made! There’s something for everyone, regardless of your degree or musical ability, and I have been struck by how welcoming and friendly everyone was. Music Durham – the organisation that manages the music ensembles within the University – offers masterclasses throughout the year, which are very exciting opportunities to be coached by renowned musicians, and also enables students to perform in iconic venues such as the Cathedral or Castle – which is a magical experience! These societies are what made my time at Durham so special, so don’t hesitate to go to the fair and ask for more information.”
- Pamina Husseini, President of Music Durham
"If there's something you want to change about Durham, a cause you want to champion, or problem you want to solve, then you should run in an election. You could help run a student group, sit on Assembly, be a delegate at an NUS conference, or even become a Trustee of the SU. Getting involved in student groups and the SU has been the most rewarding thing I have done at university, and it’s where I have seen my time and effort actually make a difference to people. If you don't see yourself represented already, that's all the more reason to run!"
- Kate McIntosh, former SU President