A Fresher’s guide to Lancaster University
Firstly, if you’re going to Lancaster University, great choice! I hope you enjoy the place as much as I have over the past year.
Term starts later than at other unis
One of the great things about Lancaster University is that the term begins much later than most other universities! Although it means staying at home longer with fewer friends about, this means the ones who have gone can be your Freshers guinea-pigs. Ask them what stuff that they wish they’d taken with them to uni, and get tips off of them – your friends know you the best and will know exactly what you might need that another person might think is only trivial
The Spine Diversion Routes
This is a boring part of Lancaster University, in fact, it is a royal pain! During Freshers, you will most likely find diversion routes taking you in all sorts of weird directions on campus. This is for the development of the university, and they are trying to reassure us that it will be over soon! This is just a warning that the route you learn to get to a lecture may just change at any moment – so leave a little more time to get to lectures. Last year, I found myself running around like I’d lost my head trying to find out how to get to my lecture, which should have only been a minute away and took me ten!
The most predictable part of Freshers’ Week is the fair, where every society turns out to pitch why they are the best and to get you on board. You must not miss this! Not only is it excellent for finding a future hobby, or even an existing one, it is a great day or two to spend with people that you’ve only just met and to get to know them a little better. There will be plenty of freebies for you to grab; last year I collected toothpaste, pizza and Greggs (a weird selection I know…)! It is really busy and expands between two buildings, so don’t be put off by the number of stands. They also hand out maps, so if wandering around for hours isn’t your thing, then you can just bee-line to where you want to be.
Use Weatherspoon’s like a parent cooking for you
Although it’s off-campus, the Sir Richard Owen Weatherspoon’s in town will become like a second home! The food is good, cheap and the pub is great in the winter months. I went here during Freshers’ Week and it was a good way to get to know my flat around some food which we could all afford. In the evenings it’s also fab as it’s right next to one of the clubs – so you can grab their ‘2 for £12’ pitchers before proceeding with your night!
Do an on-campus college bar crawl
Lancaster Uni is one of the few unis with colleges, and each college has its own bar. Don’t just go to your college’s bar, explore them all, as they all have differing themes (an example: Bowland is more homely, Grizedale more clubby and Pendle is rather Indie). One night during Freshers there is an on-campus bar crawl, and personally, I thought this was the best night, as you can decide when to leave a bar to go to the next. If you’re more like me and clubs aren’t your forte, you can go to a few and then back to your flat for a few games with some others. It’s also a great way to explore campus – even if with a more drunken perspective!
Do the activities
Although it can be daunting, it is totally worth trying lots of the society taster sessions. I didn’t do many of these during my Freshers and I regret it (I’m making up for it this year). They’re a good way of working out which society will suit you, and to also meet new people. Remember: don’t be put off talking to people, everyone is in the same boat as you – we all want to make friends! Most tasters are on campus, but for the societies that might be off campus, they will have pick up/meeting points on campus so don’t worry about getting lost in Lancaster!
The biggest tip of all is just to be yourself. I know how cheesy that sounds, but it’s true! You will meet some people that you’ll never speak to again, and others will become sound friends. For me, I’m not into drinking and clubs, which I was really worried about, but I have met so many incredible people who are the same as me!
Good luck with Freshers and the rest of the year ahead!