September 28, 2016 - bellvue-admin - Student Life
With freshers weeks about to kick off up and down the country, new students everywhere will be brimming with equal measures of excitement and nervousness.
From practical tips on how to get by without mum and dad to how to make sure you make friends, we’ve drawn upon our experiences (and mistakes!) from freshers weeks’ gone by, to give you our ten top tips to get through it all.
Don’t Worry About FoMO
In the social media age, more and more of us suffer from FoMO (Fear of Missing Out that is…).
And the FoMO is particularly real when it comes to freshers week, where you’re presented with a hoard of events and nights out to attend.
The fact is that the freshers wristbands which most universities flog for entry into all of their events are often not only expensive, but simply not worth it.
Don’t get us wrong, there can be some fantastic nights out during freshers week, and you should definitely try to get to some of them, but the truth is that they can actually be excruciatingly awkward at times.
Think about it, everybody’s in the same boat, nobody knows each other, and wouldn’t you rather spend your night actually getting to know people rather than queueing at the bar and shuffling to pumping dance music.
So don’t be afraid to skip the odd freshers event in favour of a flat movie night to get to know everyone a bit better and allow your body to recover ready for the next big night.
We all know that living as a student isn’t easy when it comes to money, and things start off with a bit of a bang.
Despite all your best laid budgeting plans, once you hit freshers week, they all go out of the window.
And it’s not just pints and cocktails that are going to eat into your budget. Once freshers is over and you roll into your first lecture, most courses will hit you with the unpleasant surprise that you need to shell out on some compulsory textbooks too.
For this reason it’s important to set some money aside before you head off for uni so that you’ve got some expendable cash to burn through in the first week.
Many people turn up to uni seeing it as a chance to reinvent themselves, but in doing so, wind up actually alienating themselves from their new housemates by being completely fake.
And while you might want to turn up and impress everyone with stories of all of the crazy things you got up to back home, make sure you don’t start embellishing the truth in an attempt to look cool. People will see through it!
You’ll feel much more at ease if you’re simply yourself at uni, rather than trying too hard to be something you’re not.
Sign Up for an NUS Card
It might be one of those things that you put off doing or simply can’t be bothered with, but an NUS card can save you some serious money, and who doesn’t want that!?
Once you’ve got one, get into the habit of making sure to ask everywhere you go if they accept it!
Many places don’t actually advertise that they offer student discounts, so it’s always worth asking.
Sign Up for Lots of Societies
Something which is definitely worth heading to is your university’s freshers fair, where you’ll get to see the many many clubs and societies that there are to join.
They really do cover absolutely everything, from sports to baking, so you’ll definitely find something which piques your interest.
Just be sure that you don’t go paying any registration fees for anything that you’re not going to stick to.
Societies are a great way to meet new friends other than those you live and study with, and it could be a good thing to stick on your CV (although looking for jobs is likely the last thing on your mind!).
Leave Your Dignity at the Door
Ok, maybe don’t go that far, but it’s important not to take yourself too seriously when it comes to freshers.
Freshers is all about fancy dress, so don’t be the party pooper who refuses to take part and embrace it!
And don’t worry about spending a fortune on a costume, just make sure that you show that you’re making an effort with everyone!
But Don’t Overdo It
While making a fool of yourself and having a good time is part of what freshers is all about, make sure you don’t overdo it.
Nobody wants to be that person who passes out in the hallway, because you can guarantee that your mates will not let you forget it for the next three years!
Make an Effort
Even if you’re usually a little bit more reserved, everybody is in the same boat, and it really helps to make an effort.
It’s fairly straightforward stuff, just make sure you’re friendly and always ask lots of questions!
A top tip is to prop your door open once you’re moved in so that your new flatmates can pop their head round the corner and say hello.
Try to Build Some Distance with Home
Homesickness can hit home a little bit harder than some might think, but it’s important not to spend every night on the phone to mum and dad or Skyping your significant other.
All you’ll achieve is making yourself weepy and making everyone worry about you! Instead, we recommend grabbing the bull by the horns and trying to enjoy yourself in your new home.
Once you get through the first couple of weeks, things always start to look that little bit better as you make friends and get stuck into your course.
Get the Boring Stuff Sorted
It’s probably the last thing you want to do during freshers week but there is a fair bit on mundane stuff which you’ll need to get sorted early on.
First off, many universities require you to complete your enrolment in person and to go and pick up your student ID, so you’ll want to get this out of the way nice and early.
As for other things to look out for, you’ll have to apply for exemption for council tax and maybe a TV license too!
When all’s said and done, just make sure you enjoy yourself and make plenty of friends! And if you find yourself suffering from some serious post-freshers blues, don’t worry that’s just the effects of a week’s solid drinking, not every week for the next three years is going to be like that!