Written by Anna Switalska, third-year International Business Management student Hi there! I am a third year International Business Management student and a member of the University of Lincoln lacrosse team, also known as the Sassy Swans! Joining the university lacrosse team was one of the best decisions I have ever made. Being a Sassy Swan is so much more than running around the pitch with a stick in your hand, it is about meeting people who are from different backgrounds and a group of individuals coming together to create a powerful team. At the start of second year, my personal tutor suggested that I should join a society. I wasn’t so keen, I didn’t know how I would be able to fit it into my busy work schedule but after attending the societies fair (this is for all students’ at the start of the year to see if there are any societies they would be interested in) I learnt that there are over 130 societies to get involved with. I started to look for something that took my interest and lacrosse looked like fun. The team were really friendly and answered all of my questions, they reassured me that previous experience was not necessary – which I was reviled about, as I have never played before! During the first few training sessions it was difficult to master the techniques – but after a few missed throws and a couple of bruises – I got there at the end. I made sure to go to every training session which happened every Friday at 6pm to 8pm at the Astroturf pitch by the sports hall. As the training sessions happened in the evening, I was able to balance my university workload and playing in the team easily. Towards the end of the year, everyone’s schedules became busier due to exams and assignments, the Captain of the team was very understanding if we could not attend one of the sessions. By joining a society, not only did I learn how to play a new sport but I met some amazing people who are now my friends. Being part of such a friendly team is so rewarding, we all support each other and make sure that no one is left out. The team comprises of people from all around the world and from different backgrounds- by having such a diverse group of people, everyone is able to bring their own individuality to the team. Being from Polish descent, I know how daunting it is coming to another country and starting your life from scratch. Being in the UK education system for almost 11 years I have learnt many things. Firstly, everyone at the university is here to help you, from your classmates to your seminar tutor, to the international student ambassadors. Don’t be afraid to ask for help – no question is a silly question. Secondly, whilst stepping out of your comfort zone might seem like the last thing you want to do, joining a sports team or society will allow you to get meet new people and make memories you will cherish for years to come. Lastly, don’t forget to get involved and enjoy your time here in Lincoln. Never say no to an opportunity because you never know when something like it will come round again.