Freshers is undoubtedly a thrilling yet nerve-wrecking experience in any student’s life. Moving away from the comfort of home after 18 years and forging new friendships can be incredibly daunting. As a former fresher, I can confidently say there is a distinctive type of exhaustion that comes with socialising day-in day-out while keeping on top of lectures and struggling to use Circuit laundry. I could go on about the tips helping to effectively organize your first year, but instead here’s how to make freshers your best year at Warwick. Take it from the incoming finalist who already wishes she had done more at university- the more you immerse yourself into the Warwick culture, the more you will appreciate the university experience.
1. Get involved with societies
This easily sums up my two years at Warwick. I would not have met so many people from various backgrounds with different ambitions had it not been for joining societies. Joining the Warwick Freshers 2018/19 group is a good starting point; the never-ending list of societies will constantly advertise themselves and their events on such groups. Brace yourself for the Annual Societies and Sports Fair as the numerous societies will make you spoilt for choice. From the normal sports, career and cultural societies, to the ‘Cheese and Chocolate’ society and ‘Harry Potter and Quidditch’ society, there definitely is something for everyone.
2. Visit the mighty Koan
This is arguably the most important feature on campus. While it has temporarily relocated to its new home in Gibbet Hill, we take utmost pride in what could possibly be even an alien space ship. There is a certain enigmatic charm to the Koan as no one really knows its roots, yet we consider it emblematic of our time as Warwick students. So, unless you’re a Life Sciences student who will pass by it every day, put on your trainers and definitely make the trek across campus to view our ‘i-KOAN-ic’ monument.
3. Circling, Purple and POP!
Conversations regarding Warwick can only go so far before the mention of circling. It’s simply quintessential to our university. At Warwick, you don’t need an excuse to dress up in Hawaiian shirts in the middle of freezing January. Every Wednesday, societies pick a dress-code and sit in circles to play drinking games, with the drink of choice being ‘Purple’- the infamous mixed alcoholic drink that is a crucial element of circling and Warwick life. The night ends dancing to Mr Brightside and throwback songs at POP! until early hours of the morning. It is almost mandatory as a fresher living on campus, to experience this spirit of Warwick because making it to POP! will be more difficult once you move out of campus. So be sure to pack your wackiest costumes as they’ll be put to use every Wednesday!
4. The Food Market
Oven-wood pizzas, Persian shawarmas, spicy Thai wok-noodles, juicy gourmet burgers, variety of mouth-watering desserts, and more – all in the Piazza from 11am to 3pm. Warwick’s monthly food market is possibly one of my favourite events on campus. Rain or shine, expect to see your favourite local vendors serving fresh and authentic treats from all over the world. Spend the two hours between lectures grabbing a bite and catching up with your friends. And for the nights when you need to grab a quick snack- we have our own white burger van on the piazza.
5. Screenings in the Piazza
As a Warwick student, you’ll soon come to realise that the best spot for a hangout on campus is in fact the Piazza. To make it even better, grab your friends, food and drinks, and sit on the Piazza to watch the Great British Bake Off finals or Eurovision live on the big screen. This year, hundreds of students turned out to watch World Cup matches including England against Tunisia and Panama. Throughout the year they’ll be many exciting events and so the lively and energetic atmosphere is not to be missed!
6. Make the most of campus
Living in Leamington Spa for a year made me miss the convenience of campus. Being able to spend two hours between classes in my room taking quick naps is a luxury I wished I used more in first year. It is also much more economical to be able to cook lunch between your classes rather than buying it on campus every day. So, make the most of living on campus! More importantly, you should certainly take the opportunity to beat the Term 3 rush in the library by using it after hours. Trust me, you will really miss this after moving out of campus. Apart from the convenience, take the time to unwind and destress by exploring our beautiful campus – the beautiful flower beds during spring in Tocil Woods, the lakes near Lakeside and Bluebell, or the spectacular sunsets behind the tennis courts near Westwood – there’s plenty to see and do.