A Guide to Freshers Week
By Ross Billison
Fresher’s Week is an essential part of university life, rolling night life antics, friend-making opportunities, valuable life lessons (especially those that come as a result of hangovers) and the introduction to studying at your new university, all into one.
So here’s a quick guide about how to not only survive Fresher’s Week, but to come out the other side better off, and hopefully without a roaring headache, but no promises 🙂 .
Drinks lots of water
During Fresher’s you will be on the go. A lot.
Constantly having to go to welcome talks, getting used to the day-to-day dogmatic chores you have to do in your new environment and then in the evening you’ll probably be going out most nights.
Now this is all fun and games until you wake up feeling like your head is a tin can that’s been stomped on, so in order to combat this, drink water and lots of it (from a reusable bottle, of course).
But whether you’re going out or just busy, or both keep hydrated!
Moving to university can be a daunting task; there’s going to be a lot thrown at you, almost every face you see will be a new one and sometimes it might seem a bit like an overload to the brain.
But, coming from someone who’s experienced this first-hand, the old cliché that “everyone is in the same boat” still does ring true.
The simple thing to do when you first move in is to make friends with your flatmates, these guys will be your base and the people you will struggle through most of your trials and tribulations of Fresher’s Week with, so just say hello and be social.
Everyone will be expecting to meet new people so don’t overthink how they might react, just say hi, introduce yourself and you’ll be mates in no time.
Your social life will define a lot of your university experience so go out there and enjoy meeting these new people, and not just in your flat but once you’ve made friends with them you’ll be heading out on the town or you might hear about a flat party from some random person you’ve said hi to in your accommodation stairwell and it’s almost like a snowball effect.
Be outgoing, be yourself and focus on enjoying it, even if it can be a lot sometimes, because you’ll be very thankful to yourself for making the good mates you’ve made further down the line.
Be a mindful flatmate
Ok, so you’ve made mates of your flat, everything is plain sailing and you’re loving life, making your own food and doing your own chores.
Now comes the normality of having to do these menial tasks on the regular and occasionally you’re going to want to leave to dishes until the next time you wash up because you’ve got to rush out or you’re not really feeling it.
This will happen, it’s inevitable, but don’t let this get out of hand, or you’ll eventually become the flatmate who is known for just leaving the kitchen a state and this isn’t ideal for the rest of the people using the space if you’re sharing a kitchen.
It’s good practice to remember that if you’re sharing your living space with others – try to keep it as you would expect others to do for you.
Adopt a course-mate friend
In Fresher’s Week you don’t have to worry about lectures or any of the actual learning until the week after so you can spend your time socialising and having the best time possible.
However, towards the end of the week you might be wondering where you need to go, what you need to bring, what time everything is etc etc
All of this information, you can find yourself but it’s always good to be on the lookout for someone that does your course so you can be in it together.
This is good for answering those questions you might have about the course in and outside of lectures and it also means you have other people outside of your flatmates to potentially hang out with which is always a good thing; the more people you know the better!
Take advantage of fresher’s events/societies and clubs
These will be waved in your face like it’s going out of fashion, but fresher’s events are definitely worth your time to go and explore the campus, see what societies interest you and to experience a general taster of what your university will offer you in your first year.
Joining a society is also a great chance for you to try something new, as many students end up partaking in clubs/societies for things they’ve not done previously.
It’s something outside your studies to focus on, to be constructive and adds some routine in the coming weeks which you’ll find is surprisingly valuable and surprisingly it will look great on your CV!
Alternatively, you can join something you are already familiar with which is just as good! You still meet new people, and it may help to have something familiar to fall back on in this time when everything might seem up in the air.
Either way, make sure you get involved and find a new passion or develop and old one while you’ve got the time! You won’t regret it!
Towards the end of fresher’s week…
You’re nearing the end of Fresher’s Week and the last momentous few days have taken their toll, now its time to start thinking about the weeks to come and getting a routine.
Now, this can feel like an unlikely task and you’re absolutely right, a lot of the time it’s easy to wake up and get going at whatever time suits you but trust me once lectures start to loom you’ll want to making sure you can actually get to them and this is vital.
Lectures, workshops, seminars etc will all feel like a breeze and keeping up with the work will feel the same if you make sure you’re attending each one and giving yourself time to keep up; it’s easy to miss a couple of sessions here and there but this can become a slippery slope and will only result in more worry than its worth and less time with your friends.
All in all fresher’s week will be a great time and all the opportunities that it presents will mean you can make some great memories and meet some great people who might be there right the way through your university experience.
So make the most of it and follow this guide to help you on the way.