With the new academic year starting under Covid-19 restrictions, BSAC university clubs have had to be creative with their new member recruitment.
Supported by the BSAC University Project, many uni clubs have embraced the virtual approach by holding their Freshers events online. Project coordinator, Bernadette Butfield, reports:
While Covid-19 has presented some serious challenges for our university clubs, it seems that many have successfully conducted a virtual Freshers Week. Following Edinburgh University Sub-Aqua’s (EUSAC) recent Freshers event, Diving Officer Cara Nicholson said their online event accessed a more targeted audience expressly interested in joining BSAC, with more qualified BSAC divers attending than previous years.
For many BSAC clubs, restricted pool access continues to hinder the delivery of training. To ensure their new members get the opportunity to experience UK waters over the next few months, EUSAC has also decided to arrange snorkel trips for new Ocean Divers. This is a creative approach to tackling the restrictions on practical experience for new Ocean Diver recruits, and will hopefully provide them with a taste of what’s to come.
Southampton University Sub-Aqua Club (SUSAC) also experienced success with their virtual Freshers Week. SUSAC Diving Officer, James Mudge, reported that the changes have highlighted the importance of an effective online presence. As a result, SUSAC will continue to host virtual games nights and quizzes for members under social distancing restrictions. The club also intends to make use of the new eLearning platform, which went live at the end of August this year.
The BSAC University Project now intends to begin its next phase, looking at the long-term support and recovery of university clubs post Covid-19.