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Our welcome event this year was well received by both new and returning students. We arranged with local businesses to accommodate the evening so that we could introduce freshers to the Selly Oak area and following a successful bar crawl, we continued our evening taking everyone to the new classic student night out at Snobs.

Our “come dressed as an element” theme saw virtually the whole periodic table turn up, from the not so original and easily done aluminium to the more creative angelic chlorine complete with HALO-gen. We also had a potassium-packed banana and Julius Caesar made an appearance as cesium but the most creative costume of the evening was certainly the team effort of osmium, with dysprosium (Dy) dressed as Dorothy, a lithium (l)ion, the tin man, and Scandinavium (Sc) for the scarecrow.

This year's Chem Ball is planned to be our biggest grandest Chem Ball yet! We plan to include a charity element at this year's event, raising money for Water Aid. Having discussed this with potential venues we have already had some positive responses with them offering to match any ticket sale donations we are able to raise.

Why Water Aid? The reason that we opted to fundraise for Water Aid is because everyone's favourite lecturer, Dr Zoe Schnepp, is currently working in partnership with the charity to create water filters to remove arsenic from ground water in Bangladesh. Dr Schnepp, for many students, is a strong and influential role model and we wanted to show our support for someone who is admired by the student body and thank her by supporting a cause close to her heart.