Unique University Societies You Wouldn’t Know Existed


A review of the weirdest, most wonderful and occasionally off-beat societies to join during your time at university. Whether you’re a sporting superstar, need some intellectual stimulation outside of your lectures, or just want a bit of fun,  there should be something to suit everyone!

Student societies play a huge part in life at university and can forge an integral part of your future career choice, help you reach a fitness goal you’ve always wanted to achieve, or be the place you make lifelong friends. Here are our thoughts on some slightly off-kilter options.


We’ve come to expect sports as a standard option at most universities. Hockey or football may not be your scene, so we’ve picked some sporting societies that can allow you to branch out and explore other options that don’t involve shin pads…

What it involves

If five-a-side doesn’t appeal to you, give Aikido a go. A modern Japanese martial art that is split into many different styles, Aikido is practised in around 140 countries across the world.

Why you should join

Whether you are a complete novice or are working towards a black belt, Aikido can be a great way to learn self-defence, balance and improve your fitness. You’ll use throws, locks and pins to become a master of the art.

Our final review: If you’re keen to try out a martial art, but don’t like the idea of aggression or competition, Aikido could be for you. There’s also minimal equipment required, so you can give it a go without having to commit long-term.

Full Blue Racing (FBR)

If motorsport is more your style, why not try your hand at designing, building and racing your own single-seat racing car? 

What it involves

Full Blue Racing is a student-led team that focuses on innovative engineering to equip its members with the skills to become engineers of the future. The self-built car will be entered into an annual Formula Student competition, which is held all over the world.

Why you should join

While building a race car can seem like a bit of fun, this society doesn’t take the build lightly, with many former members of the society going on to take positions in high calibre race teams.

Our final review: In short, if you’re serious about motorsport, or have a real passion for design and engineering, this is a society for you. 

The Society of Ice and Fire

Moving away from sporting societies, there are plenty of other options if you prefer more sedate activities. That being said, there is plenty to get excited about at the Society of Ice and Fire.

What it involves

The television series Game of Thrones might be over, but George R.R Martin has left plenty of plot twists to be discussed.

Why you should join

You can gather with like-minded fans of the novel and series to delve into the world of the Seven Kingdoms. Find plot holes, chat through fan theories, and debate whether the prequel will be as successful as the main show.

Our final review

In summary, this society is for those who were truly invested in the show, are ardent fans of the novels, and live and breathe the kingdom of Westeros. If you’re more of a fair-weather watcher, maybe give this one a miss.

TEDx Society

Whether you’ve watched TED talks in the past and been inspired, or fancy your hand at public speaking, you can get involved with a TEDx society at your university.

What it involves: Most people are familiar with TED talks, but the society hosts an annual event for ideas, innovation and story sharing.

Why you should join: You’ll get to meet and collaborate with thought leaders, international speakers and inspirational people, not to mention create exciting events and conferences.

Our final review:  This is a great society to build connections with key figures, learn about the events industry and get some great content for your CV.

The Podcast Society

If discussion and debate sound like something you’d like to take part in, consider the Podcast Society.

There’s no doubt that podcasts have increased tenfold in popularity over the last few years, and the pandemic has done nothing to slow this down.

What it involves

Used as a digital platform for thoughtful discussion, debate and insight, the podcasting society creates a space for peers to share information and create a community remotely.

Why you should join

Whether you’re still learning online, or taking your studies in person again, podcasts can connect you to your peers.

Podcasting can also be a big career booster for those studying journalism or politics, or a bit of fun for those who love a chat!

Our final review

This one is for those who want to use a society as a platform to ask thought-provoking questions, and invite key figures to speak and debate in a more intimate setting.

The Whiskey Appreciation Society

A love of food and drinks can also make for an interesting society. Whether it be a love of culinary delights in general or a more niche appreciation of a certain food group, societies can unearth many kindred spirits.

What it involves

 The Whiskey Appreciation Society offers a space to explore the world of whiskey in an informal and informative environment.

Why you should join

In previous years, the society has offered whiskey tours of Scotland, North America, Japan and elsewhere, since the pandemic, their tasting sessions have been virtual. 

Whether you fancy yourself as a connoisseur or are a complete whiskey novice. The society will welcome you with open arms, or should we say full glasses.

Our final review: This is a society for those with a penchant for the finer things in life, so don’t be fooled into thinking this is a ‘drinking’ society. Whiskey appreciation practices the art of moderation, and quality over quantity. Our suggestion is to look elsewhere if you want the opposite.

The Cocktail Society

Maybe your taste in tipples ranges further than whiskey, or if you are interested in the art of mixology, the cocktail society might be suited to you.

What it involves: The cocktail society aims to educate students about the art of cocktail making. Learn what makes a perfect aperitif and what equipment you need to become a master of mixing. 

Why you should join: Lively societies are a great place to make friends, have a laugh and take your mind off studying.

Our final review: This is a society not taking itself too seriously. You might be interested in flavour, the science behind what makes the perfect cocktail, or just want a place to let loose and have fun. This society provides all three!

Joining a society doesn’t always mean looking for opportunities to boost your CV or reaching fitness goals. Sometimes, joining a society just for the fun of it is enough.

Don’t forget during your time at university, it isn’t all study and no play. Future employers will look upon society membership favourably, and you’ll learn lots of transferable skills, not to mention make some lifelong friends and memories.

Are you part of a strange or unique society that deserves a mention?

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