A Fresher’s guide to UWE
All the essential things to know when you’re about to become a UWE student.
Each campus has cafés where you can get a well-deserved coffee or grab something to eat. The main campus at Frenchay has the largest number of cafés, restaurants, and a bar, providing you with almost everything you’ll need from a Starbucks coffee to fresh fruit and veg from the stall. Just remember that UWE is doing its part to go green, so bring your own reusable cups to the cafés or you’ll now have to pay extra.
There’s a range of information on the UWE website about almost any student service you might need, whether it’s about accommodation, fees and funding, or booking an appointment to see someone. There are also a number of information points around the campuses – you can go to these with any questions you might have. They can be found at D, B, and Q block on Frenchay. On the Glenside campus, the information point is located in the main reception area. Finally, for the city campuses, the information point for Bower Ashton is located at the main entrance, and the Arnolfini information point is on the fourth floor.
Bristol has a vast range of clubs to suit the tastes of nearly all students. If you like the classic clubs with chart music and multiple rooms then try out SWX or Pryzm. Motion is another great club, and although more out of the way than others, it holds some of the most sought-after events. Thekla is on a boat – undoubtedly a unique experience and also very popular. OMG is the south-west’s biggest gay club and a fun night out, especially when they do cheap drinks deals for students. If you prefer something a bit more alternative then Blue Mountain is your best bet – with music from hardcore to trance, they’re worth a night out. There are many other clubs and bars in Bristol, so don’t worry, there will be plenty of opportunities to explore these during your time at UWE!
During the first year at UWE, you will start to realise some of the disadvantages of having a uni campus away from the city centre. However, UWE does have great bus routes that go straight to the campus, making getting to Bristol city centre very simple. Additionally, with the new junction onto the M32 just around the corner, it is now even quicker.
If you think you’ll often be travelling around Bristol, you might find it useful to buy the UWE Year pass which will cost £299. However, it’s probably not worth it if you’re only planning on travelling for nights out and a few trips to go shopping. In that case, you’re better off either paying for a day ticket which costs £3.00 for the day, or a night ticket for £2.00. Alternatively, you can buy five single short trips for only £5.00, or for five longer trips for £8.75.
Where to live in the second and third years
At this point, thinking about where you’re going to be living in a year’s time might seem like a long way off. However, people begin searching well before Christmas and if you want to see your best options then it’s the earlier, the better. If you’re going to look for accommodation near Frenchay Campus, then you might need a slightly larger budget as the convenience of rolling out of bed later and walking into uni will cost you more. However, if travelling isn’t an issue for you, then you can look for houses in the city centre, Fishponds, or along the very long Gloucester Road, as they may cost you less.
I hope you enjoy Bristol and UWE as much as I do; have a great Freshers!