Now I have been at university for a whole year, I wanted to write as many university orientated posts before this year starts. I wish I had these posts to read when I was a fresher, as I watched so many youtube videos and read blog posts about moving to university and what I wish I knew when I started university, in the hope that I would become better prepared. The short of it is that you are never fully prepared for university, but I do hope that reading things like this will put your mind at rest if you are nervous about the move.
Everyones experience of university is different, so for me just to talk about what I wish I knew when I started university would be a biased opinion. Thats why I recruited the help of some of the lovely girls in my gals supporting gals Facebook group to share their opinions, when asking ‘what is one thing you wish you knew before you went to university?’. I thought to include a couple of city skyline photos from a trip to London for SITC last month because I presume most people will be moving to a city for university.
“You may not become friends with the people in your flat and that’s ok. I was placed in an all international flat in my first year of uni and even tho all my housemates talked to me they wouldn’t talk to each other. Even then it would be small talk. I made my closest friends from visiting other flats in my building and introducing myself. Also from joining clubs. Another thing is to go to all the events in freshers that the department do, it’s a brilliant chance to met people on your course plus I’ve met most of my closest friends from them. Mental health can deteriorate at uni because of stress. You don’t have to suffer in silence, most unis have a help desk where they can direct you to help or at least someone to talk to who will then direct you. On top of this some unis have counselling and people to help you get through your worst periods as well as gps if you need medicine as well.” Jessica Davis
‘Its okay to feel overwhelmed at times. Its a big change.” Michelle Alexandra
“Don’t feel pressured into going out doing freshers or even to drinking that much! There’s plenty you can do without having to spend long nights out and getting drunk. Check what different societies are offering and don’t think that not going to freshers activities means you’re not going to make friends! I went on three of the freshers nights out but made more friends from my societies and my course! Also if you’re on halls on campus then be prepared to be woken up by noise around 3/4am of people returning from going out. (Also campus security a worth befriending). If you have any issues or any circumstances which is going to effect you going to lectures then don’t hesitate to inform your lecturers! Many are very supportive and happy to help even in a class of over 70 people! (I had to take a week of bed rest after being in hospital and got given a deadline extension, early lecture notes and referrals to support teams at the uni to help me the rest of the year).” Emily Prior.
‘Not to be scared about being myself, I was really worried that I wouldn’t fit in. It was fine!” Bethan Vincent.
“Make the most of your tutors – they’re there to help and their insight is invaluable! Don’t force yourself to go on every night out. You might not get on with your housemates and if so Uni can feel really lonely. Make friends in your classes, add people on Facebook and Instagram and try to join societies of interest to you so you’ve got hobbies that keep you from being a hermit like I was in my first year haha. Never get own-brand beans. Everrrrrrr.” Chloe Brown.
‘How little time I would actually be on the course and what the course involved’ Marion Terry
“Be prepared for fire drills which at least at our uni happen very often! Don’t be afraid to talk to people there are tones of different communities and you are sure to fit in somewhere 😊 plus you’re all in the same boat, away from family and friends and making new experiences” Ines Abreu
“Never run out of tea bags, toilet roll, or bread. Always do your dishes straight away, it’s easier and avoids conflict! Don’t steal someone else’s milk (tho you defo will at some point). Clean your bathroom once a week so it doesn’t get too gross. Vitamin C fizzers will save your life. Take a rennies before you fall asleep after a night out. If you feel run down, that’s okay!! Take a day off, catch up on what youve missed in the evening with a cup of tea (or glass of wine) and take it easy!” Sophie Smith.
“Join a sport, even if you’ve never done it! You’ll meet cool people and most will have socials that are a good laugh.” Emily Henderson.
‘That sometimes smaller friendship groups are better than large ones’ Cerys Burke
I hope that this collection of answers about what I wish I knew when I started university has helped you if you are moving to university this year, and put your mind at ease. You might have found something out that you never knew about university! Thank you so much for reading this, and also thank you to the lovely girls that helped my piece this blog post together… it couldn’t have been done without you! I think that this is my last university post in my September series that I have been doing, but if you have any more requests feel free to send them and ill make sure to put them onto my to do list.