Congrats on making it to Oxford! But the decisions have not finished – you may well have been to Freshers’ fair and seen just how much there is on offer: literally hundreds of societies vying for vying for your free time. As people who’ve branched out ourselves, we’d encourage you to sign up for loads of stuff.
Societies are all very different. You’ve got the sporting ones, the dramatic ones and so on. We’re a bit different, because we are Oxford’s first and only student run think tank. Like most though, we have a range of different commitment levels, offer roughly weekly events and are composed of a complete mix of colleges, subjects and years – perfect for meeting new people and breaking out of the ‘college bubble’. There are some considerable differences between us and many other societies that make us worth getting involved with however.
1. We’re flexible. No membership charges and loads of ‘commitment levels’ means you can get involved as much or as little as you want, and can change your mind.
2. We’re really new. It’s an exciting time for OxPolicy, since we’re less than a year old. This means there is really a chance for you to make your mark on a new project.
3. We offer the chance to engage with serious national issues directly. Expand your portfolio of articles by contributing to our blog or to our topic focus pages. Get your tweets featured on our website. Help write a policy paper that might really make a difference.
4. We get experts to engage with each other. Our policy panel events are designed to foster a dialogue between leading experts and commentators in public policy. Find out different perspectives in an informal setting from some people who really know their stuff.
5. We’re also a fun bunch. We’re a social bunch and understand that sometimes bar conversations actually have substance (perhaps). So absolutely expect to have the option of going to the pub or for an impromptu group coffee after/before/during our policy brainstorms or talks, alongside events organized by our social officer. All optional and extra of course, but nonetheless part of the experience.
If you have any questions, it’s absolutely fine to and ask. We might even have a college rep to help you. Or you could become that college rep, if you like the look of us. Hope to see you around!
Postgraduates can get involved in almost all of the ways open to undergrad students: that is, running for most committee positions, writing for our policy blogs and working on our research teams. Some positions may be held exclusively for undergraduates, but most are open. There are also some other ways to be involved however, and different advantages you gain. Most will be variations on the below however:
1. Get in touch with us to launch your own research project in collaboration with us. We are able to organize research teams to support your project, connections to others doing similar work and also a fantastic publications platform to get your work noticed. For more details and to discuss specifics, please get in contact with our director at . For more general information, see this opportunity page.
2. We host a number of events over the course of the year ranging from external speakers to collaborative ventures and policy forums with academics and think tank workers within Oxford. This is a fantastic way to build up your contacts, meet new people and maintain links during your studies and beyond. Browse through our opportunities and events to see what fits you best.
We’re currently working on our Oxford Brookes strategy. In the meantime, you’ll be able to turn up to all our public events, join the debate on our online media and register to be a blog contributor. If you are interested in being our Brookes Rep, please our Publicity & Outreach officer who would be very happy to send you some more information!
Just because we are student run does not mean we are solely focused towards students. Policy is naturally inclusive, and we want as many perspectives as possible. This means that non-students are more than welcome to participate in the debate. The majority of our events are public, and our website and social media pages are open-access. If you want a more active role, take a look at our One Hour A Week positions, which are linked with the Oxford Hub and open for everyone to join.
If you have any questions about getting involved, please with our Outreach & Publicity officer. Or, if you think you have a flare for publicity yourself and would like to help promote our think tank and its research in the local community, we may have a more comprehensive role for you.