Wednesday, 19 September 2012

Why everyone should embrace Freshers at university

So the car is packed full of your belongings and one too many toilet rolls, you’ve tearfully waved goodbye to your friends and family and you’re ready to start your new life at university. We’ve all been there, and it’s weird to think that you’re waving goodbye to eighteen or so years of your life for pastures new.
Sounds a bit daunting really. But not to worry, you see universities across the country have this thing a week before studying commences where you basically get drunk, make new friends and experience the reality of uni life. It’s called Freshers’.
Freshers’ for me was one of the best weeks of my life. Standing outside my new flat with a hundred or so bags, I was apprehensive about my new life. Worried about making new friends, getting along with flat mates, doing well on the course etc. But it’s best to leave any worries you have in the car.
As soon as I entered my flat, I was welcomed by my seven flat mates. They turned out to be a fantastic bunch of guys to live with over the next year. You might start off having trouble understanding their accents or remembering their names, but it’s nothing a few beers wont sort out. In fact, having moved in on the Sunday afternoon, I was off out to my first flat party later that night where I made more friends and started a turbulent relationship with my new found love, alcohol.
Your first night in your new flat is a little bit daunting to say the least, but all it takes is a few hours kip and you’re ready for the week ahead. And what a week it will be.
I kicked off my Freshers’ with an introduction to my course, which was great. It meant I finally met my other course mates, who all turned out to be a perfect, colourful bunch. In fact they ended up (and still are) my drinking buddies during Freshers’. Nights spent at Coopers were brilliant with the fancy dress themes just adding to the excitement. The School Disco was my favourite, with all the cheesy tunes you could wish for.
The good thing about the Medway campus is that there are so many people from all different walks of life. It’s great to make friends from different cultures and countries, and having three universities sharing the same campus means you’re guaranteed to make lots of friends.
Apart from the nights out and barbeques on campus (you won’t need feeding during Freshers’, practically all the food is free), the Freshers’ fayre is a good chance to socialise and make new friends by joining up to various societies. And if that doesn’t take your fancy, then the various stalls offering discounts and free pens are pretty handy too. So you won’t need to bring any stationary with you to uni either!
My course also put on a special dinner for all the new first years, which can only be described as the last supper; the only decent meal you’re going to get for the next year.
The downside for me last year was the horrendous Freshers’ Ball, which I hope will be a lot better this year. When you hear that your friends at other uni’s have the likes of Florence & the Machine and Tinie Tempah headlining at their Freshers’ Ball, disappointed is just one of the many words I could have used to describe our ball.
The headlining act were ok, but the fact I can’t remember their name sums up how rubbish the ball was. Apart from a face painting stall and an over-priced food counter, entertainment was scarce. In fact, it seemed fitting that whilst sitting in the middle of the dance floor wondering why I‘d stumped up the cash for this rubbish evening, Sak Noel’s hit ‘Loca People’ would play in the background. What the fuck indeed! Fingers crossed it’s better this year.
So what did I learn by the end of Freshers’ week? Well there’s the fact my liver should be nominated for an Oscar for the performance it put in over that week. Or that I’ll go to great extents to get freebies, like swapping a pot of pee at the Chlamydia stand in return of a free keying (totally worth it). But most importantly, I realised that university was to be the start of a fantastic, fun-filled three years of my life, with new friends, new challenges and new opportunities. So don’t miss out on Freshers’, because once the week is over, you’ll be praying for it to happen all over again. Written by Kieran Watkins for the Medwire

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