The fresher’s guide to tackling university’s first week

Monday 5th of March 2018 12:00
The transition from school to university is a major one. Apart from classes, the longer hours, the tighter schedules and assignments overload can cause many to stress out in the first week. Stressing over these things can have a negative impact on your first year of college. Here are some tips to university freshers to navigate through the first few weeks of university effortlessly or at least better help you smooth out your transition: If you are one of the students who already have a familiar face joining your university, then lucky you. Still, it does not mean that you stick to your former friends alone. Speak to random students and interact as much as you can. You might be even surprised to find some of them might have previously gone to your school or is from your hometown. Or maybe you both are crazy about that movie which not many people like. The tip is to best interact with everyone in the classroom. It does not mean you leave conversations half way and move on to the next. If communication is not what they are looking for, make sure to introduce yourself at the least. If you are in a very different environment with no familiar faces, then go ahead and speak to someone else who comes your way. You've probably had everyone telling you that you'll meet your friends for life at university. Because of this sort of chat, many freshers find themselves in a wild panic after apparently having not discovered these special people just a few days in. It is completely fine. Though many great friendships are made in the first few weeks, much more are made throughout the year, and there will be plenty of opportunities to meet your future soul-mates. Please don't believe there's a need to stay attached to the first friendly person you meet forever more. There seems to be a common misconception amongst uni starters that the first people they hang out with during Freshers' Week will be uni buds for life. The fact of the matter is, in your excitement/anxiety to make friends ASAP, you're likely to strike up friendships with people you'll later realize you have nothing in common with, apart from being Freshers. That's not to say that you won't meet some amazing people during Freshers' Week who you will potentially build great friendships with, but just don't put too much pressure on yourself and those around you to make it happen.You'll meet loads of people as the year goes on and your friendships will undoubtedly change.   Likewise, although telling stories about your life back home is a great way to break the ice with new friends, try to stick to what's actually true (or this will come back to bite you). It's never a good idea to try to reinvent yourself at uni; people will see straight through it, and you'll feel much more comfortable if you aren't trying to be someone you're not.
Even if you usually wouldn't make the first move to introduce yourself to somebody, make an effort and others will be grateful – remember you've all been thrown into the same unfamiliar boat!
Smile and be nice – if you hold back, you'll regret it. If you do find it particularly hard to make the first move, stick some music on while you're getting settled in your room and prop the door open so your new flatmates (who are hopefully a bit more forthright!) can pop their heads in and say hello. Make an effort to remember people's names and they'll be more likely to remember you (bonus tip: apparently the trick is to say their name out loud back to them, and it'll stick in your memory). Also, asking questions is a sure-fire winner – not only will this mean the focus is deflected off you, but you'll make the other person feel good to see you're interested in knowing more about them, which is the perfect start to a real friendship!