The first week of the term or the fresher week in America or orientation week in Australia is always packed with fun and enjoyable events, allowing you to relax before working hard again and reconnect with your friends. However, I have seen many people struggling to get pass the first week and fail to take the most out of the first week.
Also, the first week of the term is super important, it sets tones for your whole term and if you hardly survive the first week, the chance is rare that you will successfully go through the remaining weeks of the term.
Hence, it is super important that you come to the university in the orientation week well prepared. So you might wonder what you need to prepare, right? Take a look at the article below for the tips on how to be prepared and enjoy every bit of your orientation week.
1. Before you arrive
Bring with you all of the essential items. Before you leave home and arrive at your dormitory or your rented flat, there are a lot of things that you need to prepare to bring along with you. When you have all of the things that you need in hand, it will make your life more comfortable and enjoyable. It also saves you time going shopping, especially when you will be super busy for the first few weeks. Here are some of the most important things that you should bring with you:
- Cooking utensils. You don’t need to bring the whole kitchen with you. Just a few bits and pieces such as spoons, bowls and dishes.
- First aid kit. And the medicines that you often have to take.
- Bed sheets.
- Books, notebooks, pens, pencils and other important stationeries that you will use.
- An extension power cable.
Also, don’t worry that you might forget one or two things at home. You can schedule a shopping trip to gather your missing items. Just keep in mind that the list above represents the things that you will surely need.
Open a student bank account. If you don’t have a student bank account already, it is time to think about which bank you are going to store your money in. Many banks offer great deals for students. All you need to do is do your research online and compare between these deals before deciding on which one is the best for you. For international students, you may be able to open a bank account only after you arrive at the university and request an enrolment letter from the university. In this case, it is a smart idea to bring cash with you to spend during the first few weeks.
Get updates from the university. You should follow your university’s websites and social media pages for updates about the upcoming orientation week or any event that you would like to take part in. These sites will also provide you with guidance and information that you would need to register for your studying.
2. When you arrive
Inform other people of your arrival. Right when you arrive at the university, you should inform your families and friends that you have arrived safely. You also need to inform your university about your arrival and register for your units as soon as possible. You should also contact your accommodation’s place so that they will be able to give you your keys as soon as possible.
Make friends. After you come to your room, spend time to look around for other people living in the same flat or building with you and make friends with them. Talking to other people will surely make you less homesick. Also, it is a great chance for you to help other people and vice versa.
Organize your room and make it as “feel like home” as possible. When you arrive, you should spend a day or two to unpack your luggage and get your room organized. You will be super easy later on. Also having a room that looks like your room will soften your feeling of homesickness. In addition, a well-organized room will surely set your motivation to get things done higher than ever.
Familiarize yourself with the places and buildings you are going to live and study in. Start with your hall. Find out where you are going to cook or wash your clothes. Get to know more about the where you are going to live. Then move on to bigger areas. You should take a walk around your campus. Check your timetable and learn more about the buildings where you are going to have lectures. Then form your route to the lectures so that you will not get lost and be late for your classes. In addition, you can explore to see if there is any nice bar or restaurant and shop on the campus.
Go to Orientation’s fair and sign up for one or two societies. Then go to the orientation’s fair. It is a good chance for you to talk to people, make friends and learn more about the societies that are currently running. Think about the societies that you want to sign up. There are many interesting clubs and societies that you want to join for sure. But you should only focus on just a few of time. You don’t have much time and effort to participate in them all. In addition, joining 1 or 2 societies and contributing to the growth of these societies would look better on your CV rather than just a list of the societies that you sign up without showing much commitment to none of them. In addition, orientation’s fairs offer a lot of freebies and it is a great chance for you to come around and see if you want to grab any of them.
3. Beyond the first week
Contribute and participate in your flat’s activities. Making friends is just the initial step for living in harmony with your flatmates. You also should contribute and participate in your flat’s activities. Doing things such as cleaning and washing up as well as planning a rota will ensure that you and your flatmates can enjoy living with each other for the rest of the term.
Overall, there are a lot of things that you need to do in order to survive the fresher’s week. The key thing here is a good preparation. You need to prepare all of the things that you need and bring them with you to the campus. In addition, you need to spend your time organizing your room to make it look like home, talking to other people and familiarising yourself with your surroundings. Then during your orientation week, try to be as actively involved as possible by signing up for your favourite societies and make more friends along the way.
I am sure that as long as you are prepared in term of all what you need and your mind, you would be able to live through the fresher’s week and enjoy the rest of your term to the fullest.