Getting involved with activities and opportunities outside your academic studies.

Written by: UPSU

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Here at your Students’ Union, we aim to enhance your student experience by offering a variety of different opportunities that reflect your career ambitions, interests, hobbies, and leisure activities to help you learn and grow outside of your academic studies and to feel social fulfilled. 


Enhance your professional development outside of your degree: 

We endeavour to provide you with a diversity of opportunities for you to enhance your learning and development and to help you prepare for and accelerate in your chosen field. We can support you with finding and securing internships, work placements, and volunteering opportunities externally and through volunteering events organised by our Student-Led Volunteering programme. 

Furthermore, if you are looking to earn while you learn, we employ members of student staff in a variety of roles from running our SU Bar and Coffee Spot, serving customers in our SU Shop, or providing technical assistance at our events.


   Find student jobs at the SU here. 


Get involved with sporting activities and student groups:

Aside from academic and career development, UPSU also champions student progression in sports and other competitive and social activities. We support over 100 student-led sports clubs and societies, from basketball to biology, rugby to the robotics society, there is student group for everyone. You may choose to join a student group for fun and to learn a new skill, or you may wish to compete in local and national competitions, such as in BUCS or Varsity. We are here to support you and find progression routes for you to explore and advance in interests outside of academic work. 


Browse all student groups here. 


  Photo: BUCS Volleyball away game. 


Discover new interests and hobbies without the commitment: 

UPSU equally provides opportunities for students to discover new interests through leisurely activities and non-competitive sports sessions. For example, the Give It A Go programme is a timetable of either free or low-cost activities, including sports such as rock climbing, badminton, and yoga, which take place either on the University of Plymouth campus, in our SU Gym, or in other local leisure centres. All activities have equipment provided, and where required, travel arrangements are organised by SU staff. This year, Give It A Go has introduced day trips, workshops, and a host of other activities either in Plymouth or its surrounding areas to enable the student community to explore new places, visit local attractions and enjoy thrilling experiences whilst making new friends. This has included trips to the Eden Project, Paignton Zoo and paddle boarding and kayaking sessions at Mount Batten which have proven to be very popular with our students.

Browse all GIAG activities here.


  Photo: GIAG The Eden Project trip


Discover volunteering opportunities that fit around your studies:

We provide students with weekly opportunities to get involved with one-off volunteering opportunitiesthrough our Student-Led Volunteering programme. These day trips allow students to meet and socialise with other University of Plymouth students and work together by volunteering their time to supporting organisations in and around Plymouth, making a real difference to the local community.

We also collaborate with a diversity of charities and organisations in Devon and Cornwall to bring you volunteering opportunities with external organisations and charities that work around your studies. On our website, there is a webpage specifically for volunteering opportunities under the tab ‘get involved’. On this webpage you can browse an array of volunteering opportunities that can complement your degree, align with your social interests or enable you to experience something completely new to you.


Get involved with activities and campaigns that are meaningful to you:

It is our mission to help you feel empowered and inspired to get involved with activities that are meaningful to you. We want you to feel supported to step forward and immerse yourself in campaigns and projects that reflect your values and aspirations. We exist to represent your interests both within the University and the wider community and support your rights to campaign on local, national, and even international issues by providing you with advice and guidance. 

Here at your Students’ Union, we have several autonomous student-led campaigns you can get involved with that support the quality of life of the student community and help to represent and bring about change and awareness for groups or demographics of students.

UPSU also provides opportunities for students to be part of fundraising initiatives for local and national causes through Plymouth Raise and Give (RAG): the main student fundraising group on campus. RAG have a committee of passionate student volunteers who help to organise fundraising events and opportunities for University of Plymouth students. 


Attend SU weekly events and festivals: 

The academic programme at Plymouth is rigorous and there are high expectation places on students by both the University and by themselves. A good work life balance is essential, which is why we make sure we host weekly, fun student nights at the SU as well as special events and festivals throughout the year. 

Students are welcome to attend as many of our weekly evening events, including Jam House: an open mic night where students can perform and showcase their musical talent to the student community alongside local artists and bands who regularly perform. Karaoke and quiz nights are also popular weekly events where students come together to socialise, have a drink, and switch off from academic work. On Friday and Saturday nights, the SU transforms into a lively student nightclub where much of our community choose to spend their weekend nights out. Our SU nightclubs offer students a safe space to have fun with themed nights, DJs, professional photographers, and drinks at student-friendly prices.

Aside from our weekly events, we organise festivals such as Rum and Reggae and Ciderfest, and host celebratory events to mark special occasions such as St Patrick’s Day and Pride on Campus in the SU. 

Our biggest student event of the year is the annual Summer Ball where thousands of students dress up and enjoy a packed programme of entertainment, including live music, fairground rides, food stalls, and amazing artists: this year’s headliner was Chase & Status! 


   Photo: Summer Ball 2023 


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