Top 7 Things I wish I’d known as a Fresher

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Ah, fresher’s. Possibly the strangest week of any student’s life. Thousands of young people move to a city they’ve likely never slept a night in before: it’s undoubtedly going to make even the most confident people feel a little nervous. My fresher’s experience was rocky to say the least – I was on the phone to my mum every night melodramatically repeating the phrases “why am I here?” and “what am I doing?”

So, in an attempt to shift those nerves and pre-university jitters, I’ve called upon the experience of some pals from universities across the country, as well as my own, and compiled a list of the top 7 things I wish I’d known as a fresher…

  • It’s normal to feel lonely.

    I was actually surprised at how often this one came up when I was asking around. It’s important to understand that while going to uni is a super exciting time, moving away from constant family company is bound to make you feel lonely at some point. It’s completely normal.

  • You don’t have to drink to make friends.

    Another popular one. Yes, getting completely sloshed at uni is fun, but despite popular misconception fresher’s isn’t all about the clubbing… and you’re probably not going to meet your friends for life on a night out (although it has been done).

  • Try as many societies as possible.

Fresher’s week is packed with ‘Give It A Go’ sessions where you can try out a society for free without making any commitments. Don’t worry though about cramming everything into fresher’s week; there are also lots of these sessions held throughout the year so you don’t have to get started straight away.

  • Make the most of the Dominos tent.

The highlight of fresher’s week was undoubtedly the free stuff, most notably the enticing blue Dominos tent outside the Union handing out greasy goodness. I’m not saying you need to go every hour, but then again another slice can’t hurt… right?

  • Fresher’s week is made out to be a bigger deal than it actually is.

In my opinion far too much pressure is put on new students in fresher’s week to make friends, settle in, join   societies, etcetera etcetera. I can vouch that fresher’s week is far more enjoyable in second and third year!

  • Take advantage of the Amazon Prime free trial.

If you’re moving into halls you’ll probably have been given a flyer about this, but those six months of free next day delivery are golden times that deserve to be taken full advantage of.

  • You probably won’t ‘pass first year in your sleep’.

I lost count of how many times I was told this in fresher’s week, but first year has taught me that this is complete fiction. Don’t get me wrong, first year is the best time to have fun and try new things, but keep in mind the ultimate reason you’re here.

I hope I’ve helped to calm any fresher’s doubts and offered some useful tips to help you through your first days of university. To summarise: try not to put so much pressure on yourself during fresher’s week, get loads of free pizza, and above all enjoy yourself!


Morwenna Davies