September Update: Freshers’ Week and Making the Most of Your University Experience
Can you believe it’s the end of September already? We definitely can’t in the Southampton Hub office! It’s been a whirlwind of a month, topped off with a very active and exciting freshers’ week at the University of Southampton. So what have we been up to this month?
Getting ready for recruitment:
A lot of this month has involved the staff team and committee getting prepped for freshers’ week recruitment. This includes:
- Getting our Instagram back up and running;
- Printing some beautiful flyers — thanks to all the returning volunteers at the Bunfight who came over to tell us how amazing they looked this year;
- Updating the website with all new information about our programmes, including new opportunities with partners and sections dedicated to what skills you’re getting through volunteering;
- Updating all the selection and training materials;
- And training our student committee (more on that below).
PS. Applications for projects are open now, so get them in ASAP! That includes volunteers who volunteered last year — we still need you to apply but you don’t need to do selection, just training.
Welcoming the committee back:
Our committee are back and they’re looking great in brand new Southampton Hub hoodies, which you may have seen at the Bunfight and Volunteering & Community Fayre. Some of our committee who’ve been back in Southampton early have also been going to our partner meetings with staff member, Sophie.
The staff team ran a three hour session with our committee thinking about the context of being part of the Student Hubs network; why students choose to volunteer; our social action journeys; what good communications looks like; equality and inclusion; and how to successfully pitch the Hub at recruitment events.
Come along and meet them in person at our Welcome Event next week. The event is taking place on Wednesday 3rd October, 6–7pm in 58/1039 (Murray building), and you can hear about our programmes, chat to the committee, apply and get some free food!
Making the most of your university experience:
So, moving onto the other part of this blog: how to make the most of university. Whether you’re a fresher or have been at uni for one/two/three years or more, there are plenty of ways you can make the most of your experience. Our top tips are below…
Tip #1: Don’t be afraid to get involved
It can be scary to go to an event alone, whether you’re a fresher or not. But please don’t let that stop you! Lots of people will be in the same position as you and you never know, that event/social/induction could lead to great things!
Tip #2: Don’t worry about FOMO
However, it’s important not to let the fear of missing out push you to your limits. You might not be able to attend every freshers’ event you signed up for, or do all the opportunities you wanted to this term because of your timetable. That doesn’t mean you can’t do it next term, or email a society to ask if they have other opportunities to join later in the year. Being proactive in asking those questions or looking realistically at your timetable can solve a lot of problems which might develop later on.
Tip #3: Do take a positive attitude
Going into new activities and opportunities with a positive mindset can make such a difference. Instead of thinking that you can’t do something, why not try thinking that you already have the skills and experience necessary to succeed? By framing things in this way, it makes that first step easier, and if you need to ask for help, do! And if everything unfortunately does go wrong, well, at Student Hubs we’re big believers in failure as a learning opportunity. Embrace it, learn from it, and move on!
Tip #4: Do feel like you can make change
You can make change, right now. Whether that’s by joining a new club, volunteering, getting involved in the local community, or speaking to a lecturer or tutor. It can be hard to ask for help or speak to someone about how you’re feeling, but making that move is empowering, and it’s you who ultimately shapes what your university experience looks.
So keep those tips in mind when going to freshers’ events, starting new timetables and thinking about what this year at university is going to look like. Plus if you’re looking for a friendly bunch of people to join, the Hub is here and we’d love to have you with us.