Fresher’s Week: In retrospect

Fresher’s Week is undoubtedly one of the most memorable periods of university! You’ve just arrived at your long awaited destination, you have 101 things that need to be done before the break of dusk and it has just dawned on you that university life has finally arrived.

The next week of your existence will be hectic, to say the least. If I’m honest, my days and nights during fresher’s merged into one constant memory which, looking back on, amuses me to this day. Much like every first year student, I came to Surrey thinking that I had week 1 in the bag, I was determined to go out every night and to dodge fresher’s flu…Boy was I wrong! If you’re a student thinking about coming to Surrey, then I’m here to tell you what to expect from Fresher’s week and certain aspects that you definitely want to avoid. If you’ve already had your iconic fresher’s, there’s always next year!

The most important thing I learnt during my first week is that sleep is crucial! Sleep is something that you might not get enough of in university, especially when you’re partying by night and hitting the books by day. If you’re anything like me, then doing the ‘7 nights of fresher’s’ challenge might seem right up your street – who wouldn’t want to go clubbing for a week straight! Looking back, I would have perhaps missed a few events in order to remain proactive during the day. I seem to have forgotten that Rubix is open and active all year round, they host Citrus on wild Wednesday’s and a large amount of Flirt events on Fridays. You’ll have plenty of party nights ahead of you, so pace yourself during fresher’s and keep on top of your sleep! The last thing you want is to end up with a questionable sleeping schedule at the very beginning of university.

One thing that I really enjoyed during my first week at university was spending time getting to know others around me. In a week that might seem to fly by, remind yourself that this is where you are going to be living for presumably a long period of time, so you want to make sure that you bond with your course mates and get to know your lecturers a bit more. When I had any introductory meetings or socials, I would be sure to arrive about 10 minutes earlier so that I could sit and chat with other early birds, this meant that I could establish friendships and my chances of feeling lonely or left-out decreased. Personally, I would try to avoid limiting yourself to one friendship group because you never know how you may be feeling as time progresses – remember that it’s okay to have multiple groups, a change of scenery is often good and it sets you up to have a great social connection in the working world.

Another aspect of this week that I would strongly recommend is going to Fresher’s Fair. This event brings together all the various societies within the University of Surrey under one massive tent in Patt’s Field. Go along with your flatmates and spend the afternoon deciding what societies you’d be interested in, remembering to keep an open mind – this is a new chapter of your life, so you might as well pick up some hobbies or interests. Additionally, this is also a great opportunity to find out if you and your friends share any sports or activities in common – a great way to strengthen your bond.

I’d like to leave you with just one more piece of advice…Stay hydrated and happy! Fresher’s week will have you up and down for a very long time, and you’ll realize that food and drink, amongst other things, won’t be your top priority. Ensure that you carry a refillable water bottle, that way you’ll, not only be saving the turtles, but also hydrated in order to keep your body happy! Personally, I love the fact that MySurrey Hive have a tap with both hot and cold water, saving you the hassle of purchasing any in the morning. Lastly, while you’re at the Hive, remember that the staff there are always willing to help with whatever issues you face during Fresher’s week.

By Karim Julian Acolina

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