Dear… is a new series of articles that Label will be posting. Throughout this series, people will share open letters addressed to anyone from boyfriends, friends, family to even pets. These open letters allow for us to explore the minds of others and their deepest thoughts. From personal journeys to self-discovery, this is a series that is worth looking out for and giving a read. 

Volunteer writer, Hannah Jane Thompson, adds to the ‘Dear…’ series with an empowering letter addressing herself during Freshers. 

It’s a little bit strange reflecting on an incredible four years… four you may ask! Well, fresher Hannah, you decided you loved Loughborough so much you’d stay another year and do a Masters… I know right that wasn’t the life plan!

You came to Loughborough wanting that infamous ‘Loughborough Experience’ and little did you know how much you’d become a part of it. You were shy, naïve and so, so quiet. You made some great friends in first year but your worlds were just so different. P.S. You’re still cringy and I’m sure this letter will cringe you out.

First things first, the most expensive accommodation isn’t worth it for the sake of an en-suite… stop being a princess think of the money you could save and the summer adventures you could have instead. Also, learn to cook in advance – pasta gets very boring very quickly.

On that note, safe to say alcohol and catered dining doesn’t do much for your figure. If you’re going to pay £300 for a gym for three years make sure you go to it. Especially, with the many forms of potatoes you’re bound to consume… I’ll let you figure that one out!

The main reason you wanted to attend Loughborough was the cricket and yet surprisingly you never got involved. Have some confidence attend the trials, meet the people, you’ll never know where you’ll end up.

That’s the thing with Loughborough there’s just so much to get involved in, make the most of every opportunity because it really is handed on a plate to you. Don’t wait for life to happen, make it happen!

You were scared to get involved with LSU Media, it’s quite scary, to this day its still quite intimidating sitting around so many talented students when you’re still blagging your way through life. But, get involved earlier rather than later. You’ll learn so much, you’ll find your passion and next you know you’ll be leading the AU Media team and being shortlisted for national awards for the magazine you run… I know that was just a dream, but girl you turned it into a reality. I cannot stress how now I wish I had got involved in media sooner, the cameras you can use, the equipment, the skills, the people… it’s unbelievable.

Don’t be afraid to ask anything. You wondered about the RAG opportunities, yet you were never brave enough to sign up or attend information evenings. You completed Tough Guy… it was long, cold but so worth it! You could’ve done London to Paris, or climbed a mountain, or built a playground in Uganda and trek to see Gorillas. There’s so much you could’ve done… but you didn’t. Don’t sit and wonder, make it happen, go find out about the opportunities that could literally change your world.

Your world will be changed by the incredible people you meet at Loughborough, there’s no doubt about that. You were lucky to have the best final year volunteering across each section within the union but why did you wait so long? You should’ve done it sooner. Again, it’s simple and people will always tell you to get involved. But, it’s only when you’re at the end of your journey you realise how much you’ve missed out on and how much you wish you had got involved.

When it comes to your degree you’ll walk out with the best grade you could’ve possibly have wished for. But, it wasn’t easy. Everyone knows university can be tough, but living through three years of deadline dramas and the occasional exam I can definitely tell you where you went wrong . Your bedroom is not a cave, open the windows, curtains and don’t get locked into a dingy pothole-like space where the gloominess of the walls reflects the state of you mind. You need to leave the house, go on walks do something that means you don’t stay sat in the same spot all day weeks on end. Its not healthy. Microwave rice isn’t a meal, nor is drinking tea and chocolate. Girl, take care of yourself, you’ll burn yourself out, you’ll feel close to quitting, you’ll ruin yourself if you don’t take a breath, have a life and speak out when you’re struggling. You forever take too much on but don’t let it be to the detriment of your health.

Finally, you may be shy and quiet now, but you’re going to be so proud of everything you’ve accomplished. You turned your dream into a reality, you became a leader, you became more confident, you became the striving individual you were always destined to be. You’ve become part of something truly magical, bigger than whatever you could’ve imagined… The Loughborough Family.

Hannah Jane Thompson


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