Freshers through the eyes of two first year students

Fresher’s week. The goodbyes, the excitement and the parties: all leading to the inevitable ‘fresher’s flu’ and a collection of unforgettable memories.

By Ellie Zebedee.

Phase 1: The build up

Not all fresher’s events involve drinking and parties. Image: Canterbury Christ Church Student

The night before moving we watched nothing but everything on the television. We stalled bedtime until we were exhausted and ready to admit to ourselves that it was time. 5:30 am came around all too soon.

The drive was tediously long. Futile attempts at small talk filled the 136 mile journey with anxious energy. A McDonald’s breakfast finally gave the family a topic other than our fears to discuss. The cheese wasn’t melted and Dad didn’t like the hash browns. Arrival was swift, well organised and I was soon being settled into my new room. 

Goodbyes were never going to be the easy part.

As a very family orientated person, the thought of not having them on my doorstep was scary, and for the first two days I thought I would never get used to the feeling. But one thing you can count on during fresher’s week is events, and lots of them.

Phase 2: Hello Freshers Week

The first night, we sat around our communal dining table as a flat and talked. Drinks were flowing as we exchanged stories of family life and friends we left behind. However, shrouding the fears we all shared was an overwhelming sense of excitement to begin the new stage of our lives. So we began.

Phase 3: Making it my new home

Welcome fresher’s party hosted by the student union was a night I wish I remembered more of. I’ve never experienced such a friendly group of people who didn’t know each other. By the end of the night I felt a little closer to calling this strange place ‘home’.

We decided to stay in for night two. Personally, I preferred the nights in. We have bonded more over tea and biscuits than we have over Jager bombs and tequila. And although those nights out were so much fun and have produced some memorable moments – I feel like I know my flatmates from the time we have spent being lazy and cooking microwave meals.

For me, this is the polar opposite of what being a fresher was advertised to be like.

Phase 4: Settling down and looking forward to the future

The Fresher’s Fayre, petting farm animals and eating kebab van chips are some of the highlights from my week. As someone who was worried about the drinking culture at university, this week has made it clear to me that there are so many other ways to enjoy your fresher’s and overall university experience.

And don’t let the fresher’s flu stop you from enjoying yourself, everyone’s feeling it.

By Beverley Southern.

Freshers’ Week: A commuter’s perspective

Phase 1: Overcoming nervousness

Initially I had my reservations about Freshers’ Week. As a commuter, I knew I’d be limited on the number of events that I could attend which made me quite nervous. I thought that everyone would be going out and making lots of friends and memories without me, and I know a lot of other commuters who felt the same. Fortunately, that’s not how it turned out.

Phase 2: The partying begins…

The first event that I attended was the Hello Christ Church party at The Lounge. The atmosphere was electric, with loud music, lots of dancing and a bit too much alcohol. I bumped into some old friends and made some new ones. A successful night in my book.

Via Giphy

The party taught me a few things: one thing being that the walk from The Lounge to Parham Road seems 20 times longer when you’re wearing heels. Also, if you’re wearing a t-shirt with your name plastered across the front, you shouldn’t be surprised when people you’ve never met seem to know who you are.

Phase 3: Excitement for university life

I also went to the Freshers’ Fayre, where lots of CCCU’s societies and a handful of local businesses set up stands to promote themselves. I got to speak to lots of new people throughout the day and I signed up to whole host of different clubs and societies, some of which I’d never even heard of or considered before.

I came home with a bag full of free sweets and a really positive impression about what my time at CCCU is going to be like.

Phase 4: Plagued by the fresher’s flu

I’d have liked to have gone to at least one more event but unfortunately, my Freshers’ Week was cut short with a bad case of the dreaded freshers’ flu.

Via Giphy

Despite my initial worries, my Freshers’ Week was an absolute blast. Even on nights that I couldn’t go out to organised events, I was always able to spend a little while in Spoons with friends after lectures. I might have been restricted by the fact I had to drive home every night, but my Freshers’ Week was fantastic nonetheless.

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Claisse Opulencia

Claisse is a second-year journalism student and a solo-travel enthusiast. She’s Unified’s Features Editor and curator for #UnifiedFem. She mostly writes about lifestyle, travel and discussing the topics of feminism.

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