The Highs & Lows Of Freshers’ Week Captured By 7 New University Students

The Highs & Lows Of Freshers’ Week Captured By 7 New University Students

October 9, 2019 100 By Stanley Isaacs


Good morning.The morning of results day and I
didn’t get any sleep.
I feel sick, like, in my stomach.Got my lucky fancy shirt on…Not fancy. It’s awful.
It’s gopping.
I need A, B, C to get
into Leeds to do Maths.
I need to get three Cs.Let’s see how this goes.The UCAS has opened their website.
All right, let me log-in.
I know I’m going to do
good, but…
..what if?There’s always that tiny voice
in the back of your head
that’s like,
“What if you failed?”Here we go.It’s loading.Ugh.Oh!B!Oh, no.The equivalent of three A stars.I’m going to uni!Ahh!Hey, buddy. I got in.It’s my dog. She is accelerating
wildly.
Night out.My mum’s a cleaner,
and my dad’s a warehouse operative.
So, I want everyone to see that
someone like myself can get this
far.
I’m excited to move from Torquay
to London
and be somewhere a lot bigger.I’m really nervous. I don’t think
I’m very good at making friends.
Here are lots of my Dungeons
And Dragons miniatures.
I’m looking forward to the
societies.
Might join the university officer
training corp, cos I want to join
the Army,
so obviously, that would
be really useful.
Finally!Getting out of this small village.As a transgender person,
there’s the very real possibility
that my flatmates might not accept
me.
I’m just worried about…being away
from family and stuff.
I just have to be a big girl now.OK. So, me and Mum are currently
on our way to the range
and then to Sainsbury’s to get a few
bits for uni.
I’m Evie.What even is that?It’s a worry monster.Is it wrong that I kind
of want that for uni?
I’m going to Goldsmiths in London
to study History and Journalism.
And I’m looking forward to being
somewhere where there’s more going
on than here.
I’m saying goodbye to Mehero, who
is one of my best friends at work,
and it’s really sad, we’re going to
go out for lunch.
Are we talking about student IDs
and, like, the pictures that you
have on the IDs?
And in mine, I’m not
allowed to smile.
So I’m going to look
like a murderer for four years.
Well just try and,
like, slightly smile.
Smile with your eyes.How do you smile with your eyes?So, now is the time I have to say
goodbye to Lucas. It’ll be really
sad.
I don’t think I’ve ever
had a relationship lasted this long,
to the point where I get to say
goodbye this way.
Do you want to say
that? I’m going to start crying.
No,you’re not allowed.I’m just packing my
suitcase full of food.
My name’s Dillon, and I’m off to
Keele to study Biomedical Sciences.
I don’t know how I’m going
to fit…
..this giant, giant bag of
pasta.
It’s the first time I’m moving out
of the house and…
..actually be, like, living
elsewhere without family.
So it’s…..it’s a real weird experience.My bed…..well, I can’t get on my
bed, at the moment.
I’m Chloe, and I’m going to be
studying Dance Performance at
Winchester.
I want to actually continue packing.I am hoping to meet my kind
of people
and expand my friendship groups.I am excited to be joining Spectrum,
the LGBT society,
to actually joining dance squad.But I am nervous…..about meeting so
many new people in a short space.
All I can do is to show
that you can talk to me,
if you want to.Preparations are under way.
Packing is mostly complete.
I’m Bruce, and I’m going to study
Computer Science
at Swansea University.Rugby ball there, that will be an
essential.
Oh, of course, the toastie maker.This thing is going to be an
absolute godsend.
I was in a military boarding
school for two years,
and I want to join
the Army after university.
Here’s my dog. She’s probably my
family member I’m going to miss the
most,
but don’t tell my parents that.Oh, it’s not working.I’ve just started packing my
clothes,
and I just realised how many clothes
I actually have.
I’m Beckett. I’m an 18-year-old
transgender man.
Most important piece of equipment,
when you are going to university
to study Film Production,
is a bass guitar.Starting university will open up a
whole new realm of challenges for me
and my transition.
I’m now going to make some
triple0chocolate brownies,
that I’m going to be bringing with
me tomorrow when I go to move in.
Hopefully, nobody can be awkward
when there’s triple-chocolate
brownies around.
I went to my little brother’s room,cos he’s not here at the minute,
he’s with my mum.
And he has a little notebook
that he does a lot of drawings in,
and I wrote in the notebook,
“I’ll miss you, be good.”
And I just…I just started crying.Hi, I’m Ellie. I’m going to Keele
University
to study Media Culture
and Creative Practice,
but I’m not moving out,
and I’m going to be living at home.
I’ll be the first person in my
family to get a degree.
The reason that I’m staying home,
instead of moving away, to study at
university
is because my mother suffers from
Huntington’s disease.
So, I didn’t really want to move
anywhere.
I don’t really want to go
far just in case anything happens.
This is all my kitchen stuff.And I’m Max.We need to get all that stuff from
the kitchen and from on that
table…
..into the car, hopefully.I’m going to study Maths at Leeds.I’m at the last session
of Dungeons And Dragons.
So what are you all going to miss
most about me when I’m at uni?
Uh, playing D&D and you with
your really impassioned role-play.
Oh, thank you very much. I do, do
really get into the role-play.
Uhh, your passion for S Club 7.Best band ever, S Club 7.Um, Olly, what are you going
to miss the most about me?
Doing Maths faster and better than
you.
I’m better at Maths, don’t worry.Cheers! Finally saying goodbye to
everyone, it really puts things into
perspective.
That distance…..I don’t know, it’s
just quite a scary thing.
I’m going to get all the stuff
I need for university.
Not having my friend Callum with me,
that’s going to be a strange
feeling.
He is quite good at making
friends as well, so,
you know, I used to, kind of,
piggyback off of him with lots of my
friends.
So, that’s going to be quite
difficult as well, just trying
to make friends on my own back.
It’s a few minutes past midnight,
which means it is officially the
15th
and officially the day
I’ll be moving in.
It’s safe to say I am terrified.I don’t feel I’m going to be able
to fit all of my stuff in.
Fingers crossed!Goodbye, bedroom.Mum?Good morning, sweetheart.
Are you going to miss me?
Erm, yeah. I’ll miss you.
Can I finish making my coffee now?
Goodbye, kitchen.Dad, who’s packing up the car.
Hi, Dad.
Do you want to check how
neatly that car’s packed?
It’s like Jenga in there.Ohh. I’m so nervous.We’re ready. Woo!Here we go, I’m in the car now,
here’s everything next to me.
Got all of the seats folded
down and everything.
And we’re just about to leave, so,
yeah. We’re going to drive away.
Bye, house.Just on the way to university now,
in the car.
Everything’s packed up...Little brother.Here we go.I got a view of the fire station,
which is interesting.
So, I’ve just arrived in my new
room, and we have the bed over
here.
We’ve a little bit of space there.We’ve got a nice little cupboard
here.
My brother and my parents have gone
home and I’m pretty settled
in my room now.I have a window.But the beautiful
view is just of the car park.
After countless hours of travelling,unpacking, saying goodbye to my
parents, I finally made it.
Just in the corner over there, I’ll
give it a little zoom, you can just
about see the sea.
So I’d say I’ve got
a sea view, just about.
I think I brought way too much.Like, there’s just been bags
full of clothes.
Well, hi. There’s us!I have my pride flag.I can’t actually fit it all in
frame, it’s so big. I love it so
much.
And my drawers broke.I’m going to have to get
maintenance to come round.
It’s amazing. I love London.I’m not kidding. I’m actually right
by the Thames.
And I can’t believe I’m actually
living in London. It’s a beautiful
place.
You look very settled here.Oh, I’ve got to come in.Settled,
yeah.
It’s a nice room.Uh yeah, I mean, it’s very nice.Got my, I already got my Marvel
bed sheet on and everything like
that, so, yeah.
What are you guys feeling about me?A bit scared, but I think
you’ll make a go of it.
Make a go…OK.
You’re a social character.
Fingers crossed. But, yeah.So yeah, I just want to say thank
you very much for the last 18 years
of my life.
So that’s, you know…you set me up
well, I think.
All right, I’m sure
you’ll have a lovely time.
Thank you very much.Yep, enjoy
yourself.
Bye, Mum.Bye-bye.
Oh, it’s sad, isn’t it?
See you.Text us later, yeah?I will
do.
OK.Goodbye.Phone you later.
Yeah, will do.
Bye.There we go.But, yeah, that’s…..going to be the last time I see
them in a couple of months.
I’m not going to lie, when I first
moved in, I was extremely sad.
Erm, I don’t know how to describe
it. I just think I just was homesick
straight away
because my dad drove me up, and when
he left, I felt quite alone.
I have a bookcase that my dad
assembled when I got here so…
..I don’t know why
I stopped talking there.
Now, I’m on my own.Ah!Yeah, freshers!Some vegetable pie.My stuff is up here.Spice rack. My sauces are saucy.So, me and Ellie have just gone
shopping in Sainsbury’s.
We’re having roast dinner tonight,
we’re both going to do it, we’ve got
little Yorkshire puds to have too.
So I’m just starting my first meal
at uni.
I’m probably just going to go
simple.
Chicken and smiley faces as
my first meal. Nothing too complex.
Brand-new tray.And the smilies.But I’ll put them on second,
so just the chicken to start with.
For 20 minutes and at eight minutes
in, I’ll put the thing, the others
in.
Well, I timed that terribly. So, the
smiley faces aren’t done yet, but
the chicken is.
So, I’m going to eat the chicken
and then put the smilies in,
and while I eat the chicken,
hopefully they’ll be ready.
Haven’t took the lid
off the ketchup yet.
Not used to having to do that.It’s chicken, isn’t it, you know?Now let’s see if the smiley
faces are done.
I would say fingers crossed but…Fine, probably not as good as Mum
and Dad make it but, you know.
I don’t really know
what I done wrong either.
I am making instant
macaroni and cheese.
Because I’m lazy. But I’m pretty
sure my milk has gone off.
I’m having to steal, like, 100ml
of somebody else’s milk.
Shh. Shh.Alrighty, so, I just
had my first meal at uni.
A beautifully prepared toastie, made
with my toastie maker.
Oatcakes are…..the best. They’re like a
Staffordshire thing.
Don’t forget the cheese.Spread that shit out.Baked beans.Ow. Just bang them on.More cheese.Get your final oatcake.Pop that there…..in the microwave.Heating up. McSexy thing.I’ve got my pot pasta.Oh! It’s too hot.Looking edible.Oh!You don’t need to have
this much cheese.
Yeah, I do.Literally…..life-changing.I know you get it out by opening
it like that and it pulls
it up,
but I’m calling my dad to
see if he can help.
Bottom end, open
the top of the cork.
Right, no, let the arms go up.We’re trying. Sorry, Dad.I feel like adults know how to do
it, but we’re not adults yet.
Showing us how to drink alcohol.I think that’s enough, then you pull
those down and it lifts it out,
yes, yes, yes!
Look at that.There it goes.Guys, we did it!One reason I was really excited
about going to university
was to, kind of, to embrace a new meand to try and be a bit more like my
true self than I was back home.
Because I am bisexual,but I’ve, or, like, the LGBT+
community is all about pride
and I, kind of, never felt proud
about my sexuality.
I just wanted to, kind of, go
somewhere new and also having to
come out to everybody is quite hard,
because they’ve known
you being straight for ages.
So, having to come out,
it’s like you’ve been lying to them.
Whereas if you have a completely
new start, you haven’t lied to
anyone
and it can all be right from the get
go, you can be yourself.
Best part of Lincoln.LAUGHTEREverything’s unpacked now,so it’s just getting to know people
and getting to know Lincoln.
And…Partying!And partying! Yes, Cal knows…Cal knows what he’s doing.Going to have a few pre-drinks,a cheeky little shot.I’ve met a few new people now,
and they all seemed really nice.
I’ve met a really cool guy who
does Dungeons And Dragons, too.
We’re all going out tonight,
we might…
I’m probably going to go to
pre-drinks with my flat first,
and then go to ‘Spoons
to meet all the Maths people,
which is exciting.We’re planning
to have drinks tonight.
Hello.Me and Benjamin are going to
a freshers’ rave, aren’t we?
Fuck me, it’s freshers!BOTTLE POPSCHEERINGCheers!Need to go and get some alcohol.I’ve got some On The Beach cocktail.Everybody say hi!ALL:Hi!Drink before you go out,
that’s what I’m saying, ladies.
Cos drinks are expensive.Keep hydrated!So we’re just playing some drinking
Jenga, pre-drinks, my turn.
Woo!Yay!Winchester is very, very hilly.It is a full-moon party tonight.The theme is, like, beach swimwear.I’m wearing this swimming costume.See you on the other side.
Hopefully we’re not too bad!
OK, so we’re headed out
to bloody Swansea town centre,
absolutely outrageous!We’re off to Scene, which is…A gay bar!The only gay bar?
Yeah, it is, yeah.
The only gay bar in Lincoln.So, hopefully we don’t
have to pay to get in.
No-one washes their hands in Stoke,
we’re all disgusting.
Scumbags!We took a selfie with a guy
whose head was a giant disco ball.
The party must go on, and it will!I’ve just had too
many drinks already
and, yeah, just too much.I’ve been sick already.You know what’s annoying, though?We paid £10 and it definitely
was not worth £10.
They lied to me,
there was no ball pit.
There was supposed to be
free pizza, free face paint,
free sweets, foam cannons,confetti cannons, ball pits…And there was none of that, none!
No.
I paid £10!Morning.So everyone’s just so tired.Last night was quite rough,
so I have got my handy Berocca
to save my life.I’m a bit groggy this morning.It was just nonstop, all night,
and we were just…
Yeah. We’re tired.University tip number one –
when you’ve just had a really hard
night out and you get back
to your flat and you feel
like you need to throw up,
do not use the shower.
Use the toilet.My voice is just…I don’t know, it’s just broken.So it’s 8am and the fire alarm
is going off
and it’s my first night in halls.And it’s raining loads.Literally everyone is
outside and the fire alarm’s
going off and it’s raining
and it’s horrible.
What a good way to wake up on your
first morning of being hungover!
I’m now opening the curtains,because I ain’t going back to sleep.I’m not naked, I swear.I’m just tired.I’m really ill, some flu business.Freshers’ flu is quite a famous
thing for freshers’ week,
but I’m getting more of, like,
some freshers’ zombie virus,
because I’ve got, my legs,
I’m kind of limping.
I’m looking all pale and kind
of…argh!
Must have sprained it
dancing or something.
I got in there, I got in the groove,then ABBA came on and that was
me done, you know, I was there.
But, yeah, really good night.
Hopefully there’s some more ABBA.
It was missing some S Club 7,
but what can you do?
My voice is still completely
messed up from having a cold
and going to a club last night.And today, I have to go and enrol.I’ve been living in this room
for a few days now and it’s…
It’s not incredibly tidy.If you go into the Army
as an officer,
you go to a place called Sandhurst,
the Royal Military Academy.
If you had your room
like this at Sandhurst,
you would get destroyed.The corner is where we do
what’s called a hospital corner.
Just make a pocket, kind of,
in the corner.
If you forget to tuck
in your bed one day,
what’s not saying you’re
not going to forget
more important things when you’re
doing your actual, active role?
Just gone to make myself some
breakfast, some frosted flakes
with some milk, and I went
to pour the milk and it turns out,
I’ll show you…It’s working a bit
better though, but look.
The milk is frozen.It’s like ice, it’s the coldest
bowl of cereal I’ve ever had.
I’m holding the bloody glove in
the wrong hand, see, this is…
Ow. This is like a
representation of my week,
there’s, like, everything
sort of done right,
but completely the wrong way.Honestly, I’ve just been finding
life just a lot to deal with.
I have an official diagnosis
of depression.
I had a complete and utter meltdown.I was crying in my room
by myself for ages.
And I think it doesn’t helpthat I don’t feel like I’ve
found my people yet.
Cos I was hoping
for the fact that I would meet
more of the LGBT group.I just got back from enrolment,
I’m currently in the kitchen,
and I’m feeling frustrated.My birth name is on
the student ID card.
As a transgender person,I don’t want to be constantly
reminded of the fact
that sort of my legal name
and the name that’s…
..that’s in my head and the name
that everyone around me uses
aren’t the same.I asked if I could get it changed
and explained I’m transgender
and it’s my birth name
that’s on the ID,
and they said that the only way
I could change it
is if I fill out a deed poll.It feels like I’m fucked either way.I either change my name legally
and have it changed on my ID
and then I cause issues elsewhere,or I keep my birth name on my IDand be constantly made to feel like
shit every time I look at it.
I’m so fucking stressed.I had a budget plan of my loan
and what it was going to go on.
And that has just not worked at all.I’ve literally spent, like,half of what I was supposed
to have spent this month
within two days of having my loan.I think the hardest thing for me,
I’ve found,
is not having close people
in the sense of, like…
You take it down to the basis,
you’ve only known these people
for, like, six days
and you just want a hug.
That’s what I want.
I just want a hug.
I’m not going to go
in tomorrow and be like,
“Oh, yeah, I’m upset
cos I’m homesick.”
Cos, like, yeah, everyone’s got
that, just get over it, but… Yeah.
I don’t know how you…I don’t know how people do this.The fridge is still frozen.I’m stuck with water and
some Hula Hoops
and a banana for breakfast again.And it is raining,
so I’m currently walking down
to the freshers’ fair
down this very, very steep hill
which is a little bugger
to be walking down every day.
I might go to the freshers’
fair as well
and check out some societies.I really like the idea of archery.
I don’t know why, I just…
I like archery.I’m walking past people now,
and they’ve all got goody bags,
which I’m a little bit excited for.So me and Betsy have just
been to the freshers’ fair.
I signed up for a taekwondo society.I am now on the hunt
for the sports teams,
I want to join cheerleading.Rugby is the main sport,
and then UOTC,
which is the Army unit.It’s just stuff you wouldn’t
even think of, like…
..a tea enthusiast army,
and I was like…
You do you.Windsurfing, boxing…The idea of cheerleading
is really exciting to me.
But they were these, like,
absolutely gorgeous girls
with, like, their hair
in a nice bow.
And they were like,
“Come take cheerleading!”
And I was like, “Have you seen me?“I’m actually huge.”We have a tonne of free…I’m going to say free shit,
for the fact that it literally
says on here, “freshers get
free shit.” I agree with that.
Just signed up for the St John’s
society and the volunteering
society, cos that’s
all the stuff I do back home.
Lots of stuff going on
behind me, lots of free
candyfloss, I’m just going to
get some free pizza in a minute.
I think the best thing we got
were pint glasses.
Definitely.I mean, like…
Who doesn’t need one?
It’s, like, an actual pint glass.I’m so easily impressed
with stuff like this.
It’s a big, giant year planner.And then I got a free energy drinkand I tried a bit of my
boyfriend, Ben’s.
It actually tasted like shit.Mission completed!It is the first day of, like…..actual learning.To be honest, I’m actually
shitting myself, because I’m scared
that I’m going to sit down,
they’re going to start saying
shit that I know
literally nothing about.
I’m so scared.I don’t really know what to expect.I’m going to bring stationery
and a notebook and my laptop.
Luckily, because I live just there,
across the road from the university,
it doesn’t take very long.So it’s my first actual lecture.I’ve got a book out of the library,
so I’m a real student now.
And then, I’m going to get
the bus and go over to rugby.
I’m actually going to be
learning some new maths today,
which is very exciting,because that’s what
I came here to do.
I’ve reached it, I made
it through freshers’ week!
And I got out the other side
to get into the lectures.
So, cannot wait and
I’ll see how it goes.
I got the best e-mail
of my life just now.
I’ve made it onto dance squad.
I had an audition, like,
literally hours ago.I was scaring myselfand stressing about it so much
during the audition,
cos so many people were,
like, really, really good.
Ah, I made it onto dance squad!We’re at the London Eye!Woohoo!Look at this,
look at that thing!
I’m actually really getting
into this London life.
It’s the first day I’ve actuallyproperly explored Central London
with other people.
We’re currently at the Imperial
War Museum, looking at planes…
Yeah...and shit.It would make
sense to History students, I guess!
I had my first lectures today.It was a bit formal, kind of like,be quiet and shut the fuck up
and make notes.
That was OK.I’m glad I find it actually
interesting, I thought
that I’d get there
and it’d be really boring
and I’d just be like,
“I don’t really want do this.”
It’s fine, I like it.I’ve just had the best experience.What I’ve learnt,
I suppose, being at uni,
is that who I was was good enough.I think I have found my pride,but I have found my pride
in other things,
like being a mathematician, being a
first-aider, and being a nerd.
And these are the things that
make me me, these are the things
that make me proud to be me.I’ve loved every day
and every minute.
Anybody that asks me,
“Oh, should I go to uni?”
I’m like, it’s been one of the
best decisions I’ve made.
You move away from your family,
the people you’ve been dependent
on your whole life and you go
into an environment where
you don’t know anybody,
but the people that I’ve met,
they’re just so, like,
down-to-earth and kind and genuine.
I can’t wait for the rest
of it, to be fair.
Just having a glass of milk
before I go to bed,
some biscuits and doing
a bit of maths.
So, this is kind of
my perfect evening in.
This has been good.
I’ve been Ellie.
I’ll see you later!