Preparing for University: Welcome Week
With Welcome Week fast-approaching, it’s an exciting, yet nerve-wracking and confusing time. You’ll be excited to be coming to university and starting your undergraduate journey. However, for many of you, this means stepping outside of your comfort zone and adapting to the university lifestyle. Given the Covid-19 pandemic, this will be a very unconventional start to the university academic year.
What is welcome / ‘freshers’ week?
When you hear about university, the first thing that comes to mind will be ‘freshers [week]’. At Warwick, it’s called ‘Welcome Week’ and first-years are colloquially called ‘freshers’. This is ‘week 0’ of term, where you are given a real induction into university life. In normal times, this would mean a lot of university fairs, society events, university activities and departmental/course inductions/welcome events.
Yes, a lot of events!
Warwick is quite digitalised. You can download and use the ‘My Warwick’ app. This app has all the necessary widgets, features and notification system. Your timetable can be viewed on it (which you can synchronise to your phone/laptop calendar too). On this app, you can find out what’s going on, and all relevant university information. Just before Welcome Week, you will be able to build your timetable.
A lot of events will be virtual in 2020 due to the Covid-19 pandemic and subsequent social distancing rules. However, you can still get involved. This year, societies will be hosting events online and sometimes in-person (depending on Covid-19 rules), which will allow you to meet new people.
Every society will use some form of social media to communicate with students. Check out their pages to stay updated. The SU has released a timetable of welcome week events (spanning over a couple of weeks from mid-September). These events can range from gaining an introduction to the society to fun activities like a virtual quiz night. Societies will be outlining ways that you can get involved- such as becoming ‘fresher representative’ for them.
Course/Departmental induction events
Most courses and departments will host an induction event. This will be a welcome talk, where you will be given information on the structure of your course, important information e.g. module registration and expectations. This gives you an opportunity to meet with staff and older students. Importantly, this is an opportunity to ask any questions that you have in-person (albeit virtually this year).
The university is huge. There are many components from the Library to sports facilities. The university tends to put-on many activities. Given the pandemic, it’s unlikely that a lot of them will be going ahead in-person. However, it’s still important to engage in them to understand more about the university.
Above, I have mentioned a few, out of many, different types of events that tend to occur during welcome week. It’s important that you explore them by reviewing the timetable.
Welcome week is more than just events. It’s a chance to get to know your flatmates a bit more or explore the local area. It’s worth noting that everyone has different interests and experiences. There is no ‘correct’ way to do Welcome Week. You should do what makes you comfortable, happy and interests you. Enjoy!