Twenty life-changing opportunities to get involved in at ARU


Faculty: Health, Education, Medicine and Social Care
School: School of Nursing and Midwifery
Course: BSc (Hons) Midwifery
Category: Nursing and midwifery

24 June 2019

I believe that it’s so important to have hobbies or activities aside from your studies as part of your downtime. There are so many exciting, life-changing opportunities to get involved in at ARU, including new things that you may not have considered before. Here are my 20 suggestions.

  1. Internships/placements - Depending on your course, students at ARU have the opportunity to undertake placements or an internship as part of their degree. This is a great opportunity to get hands-on experience in the industry you want to work in and an insight into your dream job. Some placements can be for a term or even up to one year and this could be abroad too! At the end of your placement year, you’ll return to ARU to finish your final year of study with the advantage of specialised workplace knowledge and skills to help guide you through the rest of your course. Medicine and Social Science courses have placements included as part of the degree, for example Nursing and Midwifery degree courses are 50% practical and 50% theory. This provides students the opportunity to go into linked Trust areas and practice alongside a mentor to gain valuable skills and knowledge in their future roles.
  2. Student Ambassador - You can be part of a fantastic team of staff members and ARU students in sharing their student life experiences and inspiring new or potential students around the country through; school visits, University campus visits or even at UCAS events. I joined the team back in October 2018, through the campus Employment Bureau, and wish I had joined sooner! I have worked and met with some amazing people and is great to see so many inspiring and ambitious students. You can also become a Digital Student Ambassador where you can work from home or anywhere and write blog content relating to university or can be course specific. This allows you to communicate with other students through social media and blogs and pass on your advice and tips from a current student at the ARU. You can become a Student Ambassador through ARU's on-campus recruitment agency, the Employment Bureau.
  3. SU Representative - Becoming an ARU Students’ Union representative will allow you to work in a team to shape the Students’ Union and the university experience for our current and upcoming students. You are elected by your peers.
  4. Course Representative - Like above, becoming a course rep is so rewarding and a great experience for you personally. You have the opportunity to create a positive change for your course and support your peers. Not to mention it also goes towards your volunteering hours!
  5. Volunteering - Volunteering is a great opportunity that helps you stand out from the crowd on your CV, build your confidence, and develop your interpersonal skills. You can browse through the available volunteering opportunities through the Students’ Union website and choose from a variety of areas, including: mentoring, fundraising, food, media etc.
  6. Join or start a new society - Each campus at ARU have societies that are run by current students and are supported by the Students’ Union. At Chelmsford, there are over 30 societies that you can join including; tea and hot chocolate lovers, nursing, midwifery, gaming, vegetarians etc. And if there’s a society that’s missing, you can create a new society with help from the Students’ Union! You can become head of the society and start a society legacy!
  7. Sport activities/Team ARU - Having down time or having a hobby is important when studying at university, and so being part of a sports team or attending sport activities can help. Joining a sports team gives you the opportunity to meet new students, improve in a chosen sport or even try a new one and represent ARU in local and national tournaments! There are variety of sports teams that you can join, including; football, netball, basketball, archery, futsal, volleyball etc. The Freshers’ Fair is a good opportunity to meet some of the teams face-to-face and ask them any questions you may have.
  8. Cheerleading team - ARU Chelmsford campus have their own cheerleading team called the Sirens, who have competed locally and nationally. They recently won 1st at the University Nationals COED level 1. They also look for new members every year and are involved in the Freshers’ Fair. You don’t have to have previous cheerleading experience to join. Why not try something new?
  9. Attend a guest lecture - Guest lectures are a brilliant way to further your learning of your course or even a topic of interest that’s completely unrelated to your course! There is such an array of interesting lectures that take place across the year and they’re great way to meet like-minded people.
  10. Attend a CV and mock interview clinic - The Employment Bureau is part of the Student Services team who offer job opportunities to students to suit their timetable and schedules, such as temporary roles, or working at events ie, Open Days, campus visits and external events. They also set-up CV clinics to help students begin thinking about future career prospects and this doesn’t have to be in your final year. You can start thinking about this at any point during your studies. It could be where you’re writing your CV and just don’t know where to start or what to include - this is where the CV clinic can help. They also provide mock interview practice, so you have an idea on what employers ask, begin thinking about how you would answer questions in real-life and overcome the fear of the unknown.
  11. Year abroad - Going abroad can provide amazing opportunities and career prospects. Some courses have a year abroad integrated into the course where students can travel to a particular country to continue their studies and gain invaluable life experiences and skills. This is similar to the Erasmus+ programme which is later mentioned. It is worth doing some research and looking into funding. The year abroad is study based so unfortunately it is not a year off but what’s better than studying in the heart of another city?!
  12. Erasmus+ programme - The Erasmus+ programme is a great chance for students to study at one of the partner universities in Europe as part of your degree course. You can study abroad for one semester (or up to one year for PhD students). All of the modules included in the programme are taught and assessed in English. The credits you gain at the partner universities will be recognised towards your ARU degree. Countries include: Sweden, Italy, Finland, Germany, France, Belgium and many more!
  13. The Big Pitch - The Big Pitch is a business idea competition for undergraduate and postgraduate students from any faculty or campus at ARU. This allows students to pitch their exciting ideas and a chance to gain support and funding. Could you be the next Alan Sugar?!
  14. Social Storm - This is a 24-hour event spread over two days where participants work in teams in an experimental learning activity where you apply theory to a real-life social problem. The teams are comprised of students from different universities to find a sustainable solution and submit a video pitch to a team of judges. The social issues stem from the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals and this year, the social issues are quality education and life below water.
  15. Students’ Union Events - The Students’ Union host events throughout the year for students and staff members to get involved in, which include: ARU Winter Wonderland, Summer BBQ, Sunday Breakfast mornings, Easter Egg Hunt etc. These events are a chance to step outside and have a little break from studies….and have a bit of fun with friends!
  16. Student Services at ARU - The student’s services team help students the minute you arrive on campus and throughout your studies here at ARU. They have several departments within the team, including the Employment Bureau, Student Money Advice, Counselling and Wellbeing, Student Advisers, International Student Advice service and Chaplaincy. All these service are available to all students and to whom that needs them. Physical and psychological wellbeing is important in self-care, and the Student Services team are there to support you if you need them or have any worries.
  17. Welcome Buddy Scheme - This scheme has been introduced to help up-coming students to settle into university life. We remember how excited and nervous we all were at the beginning and it’s a life changing experience for any person. If you’re caring, enthusiastic and like meeting new people, why not join the Welcome Buddy Scheme? You will be allocated a couple of new students for the first trimester where you can arrange meet ups and trips around town to see how they’re getting on.
  18. Event organising - If you enjoy and thrive off of planning events, why not see how you can help arrange events either with the Students’ Union, or if there’s an event you’d like to organise for others that hasn’t been showcased before. Perhaps it is linked to a particular holiday e.g. St Patrick day, Ramadan etc.
  19. Freshers’ Week - Most students will have heard of the infamous Freshers’ Week at university, and Freshers’ Fair takes part in this week. As previously mentioned, the Freshers’ Fair invites all students of all years to come along and see what ARU has to offer and there is even a few stalls with pizza and ice cream! The SU also host evening events during this week for students to go to before going out in the town! Freshers’ is not for everyone, and that’s okay. My advice is to try and go to at least one event during this week as an opportunity to meet new people!
  20. Global Week - Global Week is a celebration of the cultural diversity. We have students from hundreds of different countries that all share one thing in common… ARU. The aim of the week is to bring students and staff together through a mixture of education, fun, volunteering events, academic workshops and just a whole lot of fun from across the globe.


The views expressed here are those of the individual and do not necessarily represent the views of Anglia Ruskin University. If you've got any concerns please contact us.