Freshers’ Week: what to expect

The infamous Freshers’ Week. But what actually happens and what can you expect? Some of our current students share their experiences of Freshers’ Week.

Laura, 2nd Year, English

Freshers’ Week can be extremely daunting. As an anxiety suffering, non-drinker I wasn’t sure what to expect. But there were many events that served as an alternative to club nights and many daytime events to go to and meet people from within your college.

Students can expect an overall tiring week full of activities and meeting new people but among them, you’re likely to find the people that will stick with you for the next few years.

Top tips:

  1. Prepare for at least the first 2 weeks of course work/reading in advance so you don’t have to worry about it or lock yourself in your room to prepare for it.
  2. Give yourself as many opportunities to meet new people.
  3. Be willing to try new things, but remember to set boundaries about what you’re uncomfortable with.
  4. Stick with it and give it a chance, homesickness is usually temporary!

Annabel, 1st Year, English

Freshers’ week at York is pretty different to other unis. The key difference is your flat will have two STYCs (Second and Third Year Contacts). STYCs are current students who are on hand to help you move in, make sure you’re feeling alright and essentially supervise your nights out. This just means they’ll show you to the club and make sure everyone gets home safe, which definitely helped me relax more that week. And if you’re not one for clubbing, there are plenty of other activities timetabled.

I think there’s a lot of pressure around Freshers’ Week because everyone hypes it up to be the wildest, best week of uni. This really isn’t true for most people! You’ll have plenty more fun times over the course of your degree. If you’re pressuring yourself to have the best time possible, odds are you won’t actually enjoy yourself. Just relax, go with the flow, and most importantly, know your limits! I don’t know anyone who got through Freshers’ Week without at least one night off.

Sophie, 2nd Year, History

My Freshers’ Week flew by and I can’t believe it was over a year ago now! It was tiring but so much fun.

On my first day I had an early move-in time, so the rest of the day I was just getting to know my flatmates and exploring the campus with them. I was in Langwith College, so I went to the Langwith freshers events in the evenings – I loved all the fancy dress, one night I went as Tweedle Dum and Tweedle Dee with one of my flatmates, which was really fun.

There were clubbing and non-clubbing events every night so something for everyone depending on what you prefer to do. One day I was given a campus tour by my STYM (Second or Third Year Mentor) which was really useful, and I also had welcome meetings for History in the day too. The University Freshers’ Fair was one of the highlights for me, I loved seeing the stands for all the societies and volunteering opportunities.

My top tips for Freshers Week are to throw yourself into whatever you want to do, whether that be the club nights or the other events put on by your college. It’s a great way to get to know your flatmates.

But remember that there’s a lot more to your university experience than just Freshers’ Week – you’ll meet so many people on your course and through societies etc. – so don’t feel like you need to have met all of your friends in that first week!

Beth, 2nd Year Bioarchaeology

Keep busy and make an effort to meet people. They might end up being your best friends for the next three years or they might just be a friendly face that you smile to when you are walking around. It is just good to make connections and feel part of something.

Don’t feel like you are missing out if you aren’t a party person. Find things you do enjoy and take advantage of free society taster events as a way of trying new things and finding where you fit in.


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