By Zara Lim, MEng Electronic Engineering, Department of Informatics
Everyone has a different university experience, but how does one make the best out of it? In my opinion, it’s the socials. At King’s, there’s a huge range of societies to join, ranging from academic subjects that extend beyond the classroom (such as Robotics society) to competitive sports or clubs based on common interests like gaming or food.
I am currently part of 2 societies, KCL Fencing and the Association of British and Chinese University Students (ABACUS for short). Both societies often have large collaborations with other London universities – KCL Fencing takes part in the yearly London Varsity competition (as well as other national and international competitions) whereas ABACUS often has huge collaboration with the other London colleges, such as dinners or clubbing events, or the latest addition – ski trip to Tignes.
The great thing about these societies is that they aren’t exclusive to a department or campus. They are great for socialising, networking and meeting people from similar backgrounds and are often where you will meet some of your closest friends. Aside from the social aspect, there are tonnes of other benefits from joining societies. For instance, you can get student discounts at certain restaurants or events that may not be available just with your UNiDAYS or NUS card, which – as a student – is always a big plus.
Talking of money, there are plenty of opportunities to get paid whilst you study. Every fortnight, a research volunteer recruitment email is sent out offering students the opportunity to participate in research. There are also, of course, chances to get part-time jobs from working in KCLSU to being a teaching assistant or finding an internship – King’s has a great career’s office which can help you find and make decisions relating to this.
Outside of King’s, there are numerous activities to do in London. The great thing about being based in the heart of this city is that there are so many great places to eat (aside from the six and counting different Prets along the Strand) … If you’re feeling adventurous and the cafeteria food isn’t cutting it for you, there’s a number of hidden gems just off the main street towards Charing Cross Station or you could take a wander towards Covent Garden and Chinatown. Another popular choice is waiting in line for (free!) hot vegan food from the Hare Krishna food vendors, just five minutes from King’s at LSE. Should you find yourself near Guy’s campus, Borough Market or the slightly less well known Mercato Metropolitano Market are both great places to explore and grab a bite.
There isn’t a single right way to experience uni. Regardless of your course or background, you can always take advantage of the uni’s benefits and have an enjoyable time here in London.