They say coming to university is a massive change in your life, a big adjustment. Being uprooted from your hometown, your parents, friends, teachers and everything you had previously relied upon. For most people, your whole school life depends on getting a place at university. Teachers have taught you for years, you worked yourself as hard as you physically thought was possible, your parents have vicariously placed all their hopes and dreams on your shoulders. No big deal then.

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The organised chaos of Telford and Faraday at the Sing Off. Photo by Ushandan Kirupalaratnam.

Loughborough had always been the university for me: a big campus, amazing facilities, a great night life and the reputation to back those claims up. After having my place confirmed, my whole life turned into rigorous university preparation mode, I was ready. Being quite a shy and introverted person, I would be lying if I said that I wasn’t scared and nervous about a range of different things. For example: my flat mates being complete weirdos, my flatmates being way too cool and me being the complete weirdo, my course mates being complete weirdos, and well, you get the point. But, upon coming to Loughborough, fortunately, none of those worries were realised.

A worry that I wasn’t prepared for, however, did impact on my first few days of Freshers, and I’m sure that I wasn’t alone. The feeling of being homesick is one that I wouldn’t wish on my worst enemy. But the feeling does leave, eventually, and you come to enjoy the madness of university life: fighting over spilt milk, literally, staying out until 4am and contemplating the next morning whether 9am lectures are really worth it, and walking. Everywhere. And you suddenly think, if I went home right now, I would be bored out of my mind.

We were told on arrival by our freshers helpers that Freshers’ Week is one of the best weeks of your life. I didn’t believe it, what was so special about a few nights out? Well, I was definitely proved wrong. From ‘anything but clothes’ to tribal themes, Loughborough Freshers’ Week is one of the best in the country. But don’t take my word for it; I’m not the only one who shares this view. When asking some of my fellow freshers about their experiences, Faraday Fresher Shreena Marsh said: “Freshers was one of the best and craziest weeks of my life. It was organised chaos.”

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Freshers Ball Fireworks. Photo by Paul Johnston.

However, Freshers Week is not all about getting drunk and falling asleep with last night’s clothes and make up still on… honestly. What’s different about Loughborough is that it provides activities for everybody, and endeavours to get all people involved. From roller discos to pub quizzes, if drinking isn’t for you, that does not mean that you can’t enjoy freshers week like everybody else.

To conclude, my Loughborough experience so far has been, well, everything I expected and a whole lot more. I know that in the weeks, months and years to come, Loughborough will continue to provide amazing experiences and opportunities.

Grace Woodsford


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