By Anna Bodman
Fresher’s week (or welcome week, as most Oxford colleges seem to call it because, of course, Oxford must be different) is just around the corner which means that, if you’re reading this, you’ve probably been sat at home itching to move into your new room, all too familiar with that underlying stomach-churning mix of excitement and pure terror at what comes next! Don’t fret, you’re going to settle in wonderfully.
Here are 15 things I would recommend doing in your first few weeks at Oxford to ensure you get off to the best start:
Get yourself a Tesco club card! It's free, it's easy, it will save you a bunch of money and makes you feel like an adult.
Make sure you introduce yourself to everyone in your staircase/floor/flat/anyone you’re sharing a bathroom with – you already have something in common to start the conversation and it makes those 6 am fire drills much less awkward.
Save the details of your lodge/porters/deans/taxi firm/doctors surgery etc. on your phone – make sure they are easy to access if you need them.
Find out where your post and parcels are sent and check your pigeonhole!
Stock up on milk, tea, bread, snacks, paracetamol, chocolate, and mixers as soon as you get the chance.
Spend some time making your room look nice and homely – this is not a waste of time and will really help you settle in. There is nothing worse than coming home from your 5th night out in a row to a messy room and a half-unpacked suitcase!
Push yourself to attend evening events in the JCR or pre-drinks even if you’re not fussed on clubbing or drinking – it’s a great way to meet people in a relaxed setting while still being able to get a good night’s sleep :)
Make the most of the Oxford Union’s open period even if you’re not fussed about a membership.
Get as much sleep as you can and remember to look after your body.
Go to the freshers fair and make sure to find any societies you like the look of on social media to keep up to date on events and President’s Drinks dates.
Go to the library inductions (even if you have a hangover… I see you). Trust me: they are worth it.
Don’t feel ashamed to take the time out to talk to your family and friends at home if you want to – I find calling home massively helps me avoid homesickness.
Set up your diary and add lectures/tutorials/classes/inductions/events in as soon as you get them – you’ll quickly get used to the weekly numbering system!
Get used to checking your college email twice daily and keeping on top of your inbox.
Breathe. A lot of people will say Freshers is the best week of your life. For some, it will be, but for the majority, it will be overwhelming and stressful and fun and exhausting all at the same time – and that’s okay! Take time to breathe, process how well you’ve done to make it this far and remember to have fun, whatever fun looks like for you.