What your kids might be getting up to at university...
YOUR children may be going off to university in the next few weeks. Ever wondered what they might get up to?
You might have helped them pack their bags, bought the stuff they need and given them the pep talk.
But for how long will your words of wisdom be ringing in their ears in those first few days of university.
And how long will it be before they start putting their advice of fellow students, good or bad, ahead of your’s
After all, student life was all very different “back in your day”, wasn’t it?
To give you an insight into the kind of advice they might be getting, Ashlea Hilton-Williams has interviewed former freshers on how to survive the first week and beyond.
Hopefully, you won’t be too shocked...
Ellis Jones, Swansea University,
English student, aged 19:
“My favourite part of being a fresher was a mixture between the new academic challenges and the vast amount of opportunities for social interaction with new people. My most memorable memory from freshers’ week has to be Fresh and Free. It’s the first night out of fresher’s, and all the different accommodation blocks are given different coloured T-shirts. It takes place in a huge marquee outside Fulton House, and most importantly, the drinks are cheap! It sticks in my memory most as it was the first time it really dawned on me that I was starting a new part of my life. My advice for fresher’s would be to watch your budget . I made the mistake of not doing this, but I’m lucky as I live in Swansea. However, there’s nothing worse than finding yourself unable to attend social events later on in the year because you’ve blown all your money at the start of term. Make sure you get a map of the campus, because it is easier than you’d think to get lost! With regard to Fresher nights out, don’t miss Freshbook, the UV paint disco or the school disco, they’re all cracking nights out! And for a cheap night out, if you’re strapped for cash — which as students, we all are — Sin Savers at Sin City on a Thursday night is an essential!”
Rosie Beresford, Swansea University, Computer Science student, aged 20:
“My favourite part of being a fresher was definitely meeting new people and meeting the flat mates as they are now friends for life. My favourite memory was probably going out in onesies and everyone was looking at us like we were nuts! My advice would be not to isolate yourself from your flat-mates and don’t spend all your money in fresher’s because you’ll need it later! The campus is relatively easy to figure out but there are maps everywhere if you ever get lost. I’d recommend Wednesday night as it’s really cheap, drinks are one pound in some places and the good thing is you can go to any of the clubs in Wind Street.”
Barnaby Holmes, Swansea University, English literature student, aged 32:
“A number of my fellow students have been nice and chatty and I don’t feel at all outcast because of my ‘mature’ status, even though I’m the only over-30 on my course (that I’m aware of!) I’m enjoying the process of learning, but the course could definitely be improved in a number of areas. I believe that exams can never fully reflect a student’s capability in the majority of subjects within the School of Humanities, and I also think the core modules could be more specific in their aims.
“The staff have been, on the whole, very good. The head of course is fantastic, and a number of the lecturers have been outstanding – delivering lectures that are informative and entertaining. I found it easy to find my way around campus but that’s because I have an uncanny sense of direction. Were I my mother, for example, I would have been utterly lost for it is a pretty big place.”
Rhian Jenkins, Swansea University, International Business Management student, aged 20
“Having zero responsibilities and ‘Fresh and Free’ on campus was great! It was quite easy to find my way around as there were maps online or you could just ask anyone. However, don’t take the year for granted as the first year goes so fast.”
Rebekah Kellaway, Swansea University, History and American Studies, aged 19
“It was all really good! Meeting new people and going out was so much fun. Try and buy big bottles of booze when it’s on offer, it works out cheaper like that than buying smaller bottles every time you go out! Wednesday night is always good and always cheap! ‘Tooters’, which is the bar on campus, is also pretty cheap on a Friday and is good value for money. The most important thing I’d say is to not stress too much about work and enjoy it! ”
Chantelle Gaylor, Swansea University, Psychology, aged 19:
“It was easy to get around... I enjoyed my course and there was a mixture of ages from people straight from college to up-skillers whom had been in trades all there lives. Some aged as much as over fifty. I liked that there was a variety and I didn’t find any problems. It was very hard balancing a family life with higher education but the Uni was a lot more supportive than I could of imagined.”
Mike Jones, Swansea Metropolitan University, Construction and Project Management, aged 28
“It was really difficult to get around campus because it is so big but you do pick it up after a few weeks! And if you’re that lost you can just ask at the main building! I joined the society ‘People and Planet’ because I’m interested in the environment/animals/people and the fee was very small, especially compared to other societies. I would 100% recommend ‘Sin Savers’ on a Thursday as its so cheap and plays brilliant music. However, I’d recommend you get there early because the queue is always huge. ‘Flux’ in the student union is also good on a Tuesday but, it really depends on your music preference as the majority of fresher’s love Oceana for the chart toppers.”
Scott Jones, Swansea University, Geography, aged 20:
"Try and meet as many people as possible, off and on your course. Also, try to join as many societies that take your fancy. I joined the geography and badminton one, it was a good way to meet people. The sports clubs do awesome socials. My favourite moment would have to be getting a re-tweet off Tinchy Stryder after the fresher’s ball”.
Vicky Tristram, Swansea University, Nursing, aged 26:
“I found it quite difficult at first because we weren’t really shown around but it was easy to find someone and ask them where to go. Staff are mixed some will go out of their way for you others seem to find it an effort. I am really enjoying my course! I was dreading it at first because, although I’m only 26, I was concerned that I would be one of the oldest there! I was soon relieved to find out that there were a mixture of ages across the course but everyone felt just as nervous as one another, so we all get on quite well together. I am part of one of the nursing unions which helps with the course as you can all share your knowledge and worries”.