So you just got in to Liverpool uni: Here are 11 pieces of advice for incoming Freshers’
Your soulmate it probably not *that* guy from your hometown
A-Levels are done. August is slipping away. Freshers’ Week is on the horizon.
Most of us have already lived through losing our mates in Concert Square, overdoing it in front of our new flatmates, thinking we’re dying of Freshers’ Flu, regretting it and doing it all again the next night. Freshers’ week is as exciting as it is daunting, and the rest of first year is the same. So The Tab Liverpool decided to make a list of advice for Liverpool’s newest arrivals for things we wish we’d known beforehand.
Take it from us, instead of using one of the many anonymous freshers pages (using these are a mistake in itself tbh). We’ve been there, done it, and probably done it again and again until we inevitably ran out of money, got our feelings hurt or eventually realised the error of our ways when it was all too late. Take this as the ultimate list of rules for being a fresher.
1. Dump your partner BEFOREhand
The more brutal and controversial bit of advice but a definitive one. Yes, there may be a rare chance that it works out but realistically ask yourself, is your soulmate the lad from your year 8 maths lessons who’s seen you cry over your GCSE mock results? Unlikely. You’ll either eventually drift apart or one of you will mess up and cause a heartbreak… either way it’s likely to be a waste of energy and result in you getting your feelings hurt. Being in a relationship as a fresher, especially if you’re going to different unis, is a recipe for disaster that will only cause you stress and hold you back. If it’s meant to be it will work out down the line.
2. Don’t constantly go on about your partner
Leading on from point one, this is an easy way to stop getting invited to pres. Honestly, no one wants to hear about them non-stop, enjoy mingling and don’t be that one annoying person that can’t string a sentence without mentioning their significant other. The same goes for people who constantly compare everything to their hometown, no one wants to hear about the difference in the price of beer in your tiny town compared to Liverpool.
3. If you get an overdraft don’t go crazy with it
Living away from home for the first time and having no parents to judge how many parcels you have arriving each week or how many times you’re nipping off to the pub can be exciting, but don’t be lured into the trap of thinking that your overdraft is just free money to spend at an exponential rate. Freshers are notoriously bad at making financial decisions and we’ve all heard horror stories of the people who maxed out their overdrafts within the first month of uni and had to live off of soup for the rest of the term.
4. Don’t do your weekly shop in the Tesco express on campus
UoL students we’re looking at you. It’s an easy two minute walk sure but at some point you and your bank account will have to give up those gourmet meal deals. Accept it and go to Lidl like the rest of us from week one. Who knows, branching out from daily ready meals and actually attempting to cook might do your Freshers’ Flu some good. You’ll also finally get to use that matching set of pans that you begged your mum to get you from IKEA.
5. Don’t spend your entire loan in the first two weeks
Seeing the text from Student Finance that your loan will be arriving in the next few days is exciting news for any student and if your accommodation rent doesn’t eat up the entire first instalment, the possibilities of how to spend it can seem endless. Leading on from overdraft nightmare tales, the same goes for those people who spend all of their maintenance loan in Freshers’ week buying their new mates trays of shots or kitting themselves out with new clothes when they see what everyone else is wearing around campus. Sure have fun with your temporary new found fortune but don’t end up on the phone to your mum asking for cash to buy ‘textbooks’.
6. Say yes
Freshers’ week will have so many events going on and with over 150 societies at UoL, there literally is something for everyone. Although it might seem overwhelming at first, the worst thing you can do is stay in your comfort zone and sit in your room- get out, try new things and meet new people! After all that’s what freshers week is all about.
7. …but not to everything
Freshers’ week has a big rep for being non-stop partying which is all well and good but, it’s ok to need some alone time. Despite it seeming like you need to be out socialising 24/7, missing a night or two out isn’t going to ruin your uni experience. Also be wise with what you agree to, saying yes to a course party? nice, yes to a £20 Freshers’ wristband? Definitely not.
8. Get used to being on your own
Uni involves a lot of free time and you won’t be constantly surrounded by your mates at school or have your best mate down the road. You won’t know anyone at first and you will find yourself spending time by yourself, especially if you don’t click with your flatmates. This is okay and lots of other people experience the same thing in first year, so don’t worry! You’ll make plenty of friends along the way.
9. Not every person you meet in Freshers’ will be your BFFs and that’s okay
The girl you met on day one? You probably won’t remember her by week three. You’ll meet so many people in freshers week and throughout the year- some will stick around and some won’t! It’s all part of the experience so don’t feel as though you need to cling to everyone you meet. No one wants to be that guy, relax and go with it.
10. You will get Freshers’ Flu (but you will survive)
“But I didn’t even go out that much!”. Freshers’ flu will still come for you. You will survive. Get some Lemsips and some of those fizzy vitamin c tablets and you’ll be ok (probably). As much as you want to assert your new found freedom, a quick call to your parents wouldn’t go amiss either.
11. Remember that everyone is in the same position as you
Starting university is ultimately one of the biggest changes that you’ll experience and it can feel like a shock to the system. Don’t worry if you’re not loving uni life straight away. It may seem easy to think that everyone you meet is having the best time and has it all figured out so quickly, chances are they’re finding it just as hard as you to adjust. Just remember that you have plenty of time to settle in and make Liverpool your new home.