Our Culture Editor brings you an article on how you can make the most of your first few weeks in Loughborough.
Get to know Loughborough
Moving to a new place is full of excitement; you probably can’t wait to explore where you’ll be living for the next three years. Taking a day to walk around the campus and town is a wonderful way to figure out where everything you need is; whether that’s the library or Rev’s! I’d recommend visiting Queen’s Park in town, it’s a lovely place to walk around and take pictures!
You’ll probably hear this a lot in various speeches throughout your first few weeks, but it’s true. There are so many things to be a part of here, and your first year is the best time to see what you’re most interested in. Whether that is sports, societies, or charity work, it’d be a shame to miss out on things that could enhance your university experience so much. Don’t be afraid to contact the people running these things either – they were freshers like you a year or two ago! There will be lots of events during freshers where you can sign up for these activities, namely the Sports Bazaar and Societies Bazaar.
Make the most of freebies!
If you don’t already love anything you can get for free, you will appreciate it a whole lot more after being a student. Make the most of the Fresher Fairs and take advantage of things like student discounts and offers.
Don’t be shy
It’s a whole lot easier said than done, but your first few weeks at university really are the best time to try talking to anyone and everyone. All the people around you will be in the same situation, so don’t be afraid to introduce yourself to people in your hall or on your course! There are many other ways to meet like-minded people at Loughborough, like International Student networking events, Women’s Networking events, and the Centre for Faith and Spirituality located on campus.
Save your memories
It’s easy to get swept up in the fast-paced momentum your first few weeks can have, and even easier for the entire experience to become a whirlwind when you look back on it. Get the most out of the memories you make in freshers by taking photographs, and even writing down eventful things that happen. Nothing will be funnier than looking back at them next June, remembering how you met all your friends, your hall chants in the Sing Off, or your first night out spent in Fusion.
Don’t be scared to take time out
Even though the fear of missing out may be too much to handle for some, it’s important to take some time for yourself if you start to feel overwhelmed by the experience. People around you will most likely be feeling similar, and sometimes a night in getting to know your new hall friends can be just as fun. Keep an eye out for things on campus like Welfare, Health and Wellbeing activities, which offer a great chance to take a moment to reflect and relax. The ‘Pooch Petting’ activities are a favourite of mine.
Keep your family and friends in the loop
Calling your family and friends from home every so often to update them on your life in Loughborough is something which both parties will benefit from. It’s likely that you will miss home at some point, keeping in contact with those who mean the most to you will make your journey to having an independent life easier. Equally, it’s nice to share things about your home life to your new friends, as they will likely be in the same boat.
The most important thing to remember is to enjoy the experience. Try new things, step out of your comfort zone, and take every opportunity Loughborough may throw at you. You’re only a fresher once!