One simple Google search will land you with a whole load of tips and hints about how to survive Fresher’s week while having a great time. This oversupply of information all boils down to one thing: everybody is just as nervous as you. The novelty, lack of friends and disorientation is universal amongst your new friends, and there are many ideas out there to make the transition easier, whilst ensuring you have a brilliant time.
Here’s my tips, which being a student at Cardiff come from experience and will (hopefully) help you …
One thing students naturally worry about is what to bring to Uni with them. To help this, Studential has a pretty comprehensive checklist of items you mustn’t forget, which will help keep your mind at rest.
Now you have the kit all sorted, the next most important thing is to get to know just a few people. The easiest way to do this is with those in your flat. In my first year, I was really lucky to find I got on very well with my flatmates and we had a fantastic first few weeks. If you do find, however, that your flatmates aren’t your cup of tea – maybe one only comes out from 4am-6am and the other smells like damp – don’t worry. Don’t limit your search within your flat – knock on other flats doors and ask to join them for parties in the evenings, or offer to make them lunch the next day (free food is always popular). During this time, nobody will have completely settled and anyone is open to meeting new people, especially if they don’t have the stress of starting the conversation themselves. Be confident in who you are and all you have to do is say hello!
Another useful tip is to try to turn up a little early to halls, so you have time to make your room homely and feel comfortable in it before your week gets really busy. There is so much going on during fresher’s week you may not actually spend a lot of time in there, but when you come back exhausted from a busy day you’ll be grateful for a cosy dorm and a made up bed.
Despite its chaos and confusion, the fresher’s fair is a great thing to attend. It’s a chance to learn about what’s going on in your university and potentially get involved in something new. Universities are renowned for their offers of unusual and exciting sports or music opportunities at a significantly lower price than they would normally be – make use of this! Even if nothing else appeals to you, there are always tons of freebies to pick up from the fresher’s fair including sweets, pizza and of course, a Cardiff University pen.
Date for your diary … Don’t miss the Student Support & Wellbeing stands at Fresher’s, especially Monday & Tuesday as we’ve teamed up with Braces Bakery to offer students the chance to take part in our Welcome to Wales Welsh Cake Challenge – find out more read our blog.
If you’re reading all of this thinking ‘yes, that’s great, but…’ do not worry. As a Counselling, Health and Wellbeing team we are always here to support you, and our services are able to tailor to your needs. Information on how to apply and all the different services is listed in the link below. We will be here throughout your time at university to support you through any struggles, and the service is completely confidential.
I wish you all the very best for your student life here at Cardiff and on behalf of my colleagues at Student Support – please drop in and see us soon!
Annabel, Student Intern
Counselling, Health & Wellbeing Team
Your Student Life, Supported.
The Student Support Centre has a range of services dedicated to helping students make the most of their time at University, including: Advice & Money, Careers & Employability, Counselling, Health & Wellbeing, Disability & Dyslexia and International Student Support.
The Student Support Centres are located at 50 Park Place, Cathays Campus and Cardigan House, Heath Park Campus.
For further details of services, events, opening times and more find us on the University Intranet.