One of the best reasons to choose Birmingham - apart from its excellent facilities and international standing - is the Birmingham University Chemical Engineering Society (BUCES), which brings students from all years together through socials, sports and industrial events.
BUCES is a society run by the students of the department for the students of the department. Anyone is welcome to join and everyone is actively encouraged to get involved. BUCES goes to every effort to help you get the most out of University life and the great city that is Birmingham.
From fancy dress to fancy dinners, and that all important job finding in-between, BUCES is there to give a helping hand. As a society BUCES is incredibly active with respect to sports, charity fundraising and social, as well as industrial, events.
The Chemical Engineering sports teams are often combined with the other engineering/science disciplines at university and mainly compete in the Intra-league against other departments and societies. They're an excellent way to meet other people on the course and play a competitive sport without it being taken too seriously. Teams include netball, hockey, and rugby, as well as a Chemical Engineering only football team.
In the past the teams have been very successful with netball coming second and hockey coming third in the intra-leagues at the University last year. The teams are open to all abilities and run socials throughout the year as well.
In the first two semesters there are socials run, on average, once a fortnight. These include activities such as laser tag and a pub quiz, as well as nights out and fancy dinners.
When you arrive at Birmingham you will be assigned ‘parents’ in their second year of study to help with settling in, and to ensure you have links with older students in the department. These ‘parents’ will be assigned to you and some other first year students forming a ‘family’. They are there to answer any questions you may have; whether academic or general, and to help you get the most out of your first year at university. You will meet them at the Fresher’s Welcome Dinner, which is the first big social event of the year.
Some other big socials include:
Frank Morton – students from different chemical engineering departments across the country and Ireland all descend upon one city for a day of sporting events and friendly rivalry. Birmingham will be hosting the event this year and we hope to achieve our 6th consecutive win!
Industrial Dinner – this is a chance to mingle with company representatives looking to recruit you and have a great time in the process. Held at the new university hotel, Edgbaston Park Hotel, this is a chance for you to get useful application tips, do some networking and figure out which companies you might be interested in applying to for internships as well as graduate positions.
Winter Ball – the perfect opportunity to get dressed up, have a slap up meal and enjoy a night of refined entertainment with your friends! It is held in the second term after Christmas, so don’t forget your tux/cocktail dress when you are packing to return for another busy term.
It is always good to give a little back and at Birmingham we try to support causes that are local and close to our hearts. For the past five years we have fundraised for the Birmingham based Acorn's Children's Hospice which supports life-limited and life-threatened children and their families.
Fundraising events include students running the Birmingham Half marathon, charity raffles and lunches and a Pub Quiz, as well as donations raised through society event ticket sales.
The department as a whole has strong links with various industries in the engineering and financial sectors. The society organises presentations from company representatives and application days, often held within the department itself, directly aimed at chemical engineering students.
As part of the course students also have the opportunity to visit industrial sites and guest speakers from different industries give talks in lectures.
International buddy scheme
The international buddy scheme aims to integrate and support new overseas students (particularly direct entry students) through provision of a contact, their ‘buddy’, in an older year. The new students are welcomed by the committee and their buddies with a lunch, other events will be put on during the year to ensure continuing contact opportunities for the students. The buddies will also be a contact for their groups throughout the year, encouraging their group to integrate with other direct entry students and home students as well as offering guidance and help where needed.
Offer holder visit days
If you receive an offer from the University of Birmingham’s Chemical Engineering department you will be invited to an Offer Holder Visit Day. On this day you will have an opportunity to look around the department, as well as the rest of the University, and our largest accommodation site: The Vale.
Members of the BUCES committee will be present at these events to talk to about, not only chemical engineering, but also life as a Birmingham student and will be more than happy to answer any questions you may have.
The society wishes all prospective students good luck in their studies and exams, and hope you enjoy university life wherever you choose to study!
To find out more about the Society and see what they get up to visit their website.