January 27, 2020, by UoN School of English
A Guide to Fresher’s Fear
Freshers week. A few months ago these two simple words would make me feel an all-encompassing sense of dread. Even voicing the phrase was enough to make my mouth dry up a little. However, at present, I can proudly state I am a true survivor of this worrisome week and am offering to share some tips as to how I prepared in advance when moving to the University of Nottingham.
Joining a Facebook chat for my accommodation helped to ease any anxieties I had about socialising and meeting my flat mates. The group chat was great for receiving answers to a plethora of queries from: “When do we arrive on moving in day?” to “Do these flip flops match my lifeguard costume for Baywatch night?”. Whatever the issue, the group chat can often solve it! I also recommend joining a chat for your course in order to gain advice on academic preparation for the coming semester as the jump from A-Level to university standard can seem daunting to some. As an English student I made sure to continue to read for enjoyment over Summer; just to keep my brain ticking over.
Scout out Societies
Scouting out potential societies to join on the Student Union website kept me actively engaged in student life outside of the lecture hall. The vast range of societies available is proof that there is hobby suited to everyone at Nottingham. Furthermore, tickets are also released on the website for different freshers’ events such as themed club nights or a range of day trips for those who are less interested in nightlife culture. Planning activities ahead of time, including looking at my timetable of introductory lectures, gave structure to my week and alleviated my fear of the unknown.
Lastly, I advise checking out university social media accounts such as YouTube, Instagram and Facebook pages. The videos, blogs, posts etc. acted as sources of informal and relaxed advice on university life that reminded me of the relatability of how I was feeling. Freshers fear is not some abstract phenomenon – it is completely justified! I realised that if I could prepare where necessary the rest was sure to come naturally and slowly but surely it did.
Bethany Read is a first year English student at the University of Nottingham.