4 Fresher's Week myths you'll want to know aren't actually true!
I’m pretty confident when I say there are two types of people in the world: those who look forward to freshers and those who definitely do not. Whilst its true that freshers week is packed with academic events (registration, enrolment ceremonies, tours and the such like), it's also full of events put on by your university's student union. I have to say, the university of Bristol’s SU put on a mighty fine show this year. Bar crawls, city tours and vintage clothes sales were just some of the events put on by the students' union this year. Having said this, I’m hoping to dispel any negative thoughts surrounding freshers week; it’s there to be enjoyed!
Myth 1: You’ll meet everyone you’re ever going to meet during freshers week.
Thousands upon thousands of people will be descending upon university at exactly the same time as you. Some of these people will be on your course and some of them will be entering into courses you have never even heard of before. Take for example Viticulture and Oenology. Anyone ever heard of this before? Don’t worry if you don’t meet anyone straight away - it took me four days! Now I have met everyone on my course and lots of other lovely people from societies, get togethers, and people in my flat. Don’t worry - making friends is way easier than you might think. The great thing about freshers is they are some of the most open people willing to make friends just like you.
Myth 2: You have to drink extortionate amounts of alcohol every day.
It goes without saying that some people don’t like to drink. Seriously, don’t let this stress you out! It is completely possible to go out and have a good time without having to consume a single drop of alcohol. Of course, if you’re like me and the thought of dancing in a club with people you don’t know freaks you out then yes, alcohol may help! On the other hand, if you enjoy a good tipple of your favourite drink (gin, anyone?) this also doesn’t mean you have to get so drunk you don’t remember your own name. Drunk and in a new city isn’t really a winning combination! Freshers week is also full of useful events you will need to attend to ensure you A) enrol and actually become part of your university and B) you know where you’re going so on your first day of lectures you’re not late! Having a hangover will more than likely inhibit you from waking early enough to attend these events! Drink responsibly and think about your liver - it has feelings too.
Myth 3: You have to like and get along with your flat mates.
It’s a well-known fact that opposites attract. It’s also well known that in some instances opposites definitely repel. University accommodation offices do everything in their power to group together people with the same interests and ideas so that those late night thought provoking conversations over a cup of tea aren’t so boring. In 99% of cases, your flat mates in your first year will become some of the best friends you ever have. However in that small 1%, you might not get along with the people you’re placed with. Fear not! Whilst I, from past experience, can completely understand how this may seem like the end of the world, rest assured it isn’t. You will make so so many new friends that aren’t in your flat and yes it can be a bit of a pain having to walk a few minutes to spend time elsewhere, this will come as a welcome break. What's more, returning to your flat at the end of the day and jumping on your bed in your own little haven will seem like the best thing in the world.
Myth 4: You have to sign up to every society during the Freshers Fair.
One of the most exciting days during freshers week is the Freshers fair. Bristol’s fair this year felt more like a festival than a bog standard fair thanks to the presence of food stands and music playing. However, it can also be quite daunting. Hundreds and hundreds of stalls are set up displaying every society you can imagine. Every sporting team, every cultural society and everything inbetween. I myself signed up for a few societies but don’t feel bad when you’re walking round and you’re being hounded to sign up for everything! Only sign up for things you really want to try out and don’t worry if you’ve never taken part in any sports before! Thats the great thing about university, you can try out new things and I can guarantee you’ll be in the same boat as everybody else.
Freshers week is meant to be enjoyed - don’t worry! Relax, have a good time and make new friends!
Millie Deakin is in her first year studying Veterinary Nursing and Bioveterinary Science at the University of Bristol and is staying at Liberty Park, Bristol.