Freshers’ is one of the craziest couple of weeks of your life. So, naturally, you might feel a little bit of a shock when all of a sudden, you really have to start going to lectures, attempting work and getting on with your new university life post a mad couple of weeks and days filled with new absolutely everything!
Even if you’re not riddled with the week long freshers’ flu, you may experience post-freshers blues. Symptoms may include:
- Craving a hug from someone familiar
- Frantically googling what life at other universities is like
- Missing more lectures than you anticipated
- Worrying that maybe you don’t enjoy your course as much as you thought you would
- Feeling a little too afraid to put yourself out there and get involved with a society
and a few more…
This might sound daunting. In fact, university might already feel daunting to you. However, you should definitely know that it’s OK to have a wobble. It’s perfectly natural to question whether the university is right for you, or whether your course is right for you. You might seriously consider dropping out and applying again in the coming year.
Luckily for University of Southampton students, a huge 92.4% of students completed their degree in 2016. That’s in comparison to universities such as Southampton Solent where only 76.8% completed their degree and East London where it was a mere 67.5%.
Surely, that means something? In comparison to other universities, the University of Southampton is very much at the top of the league for degree completion, meaning that it can’t all be bad, right?
If you’re really feeling rubbish, it’s worth sticking around for a little while to see how it feels. If you’re still down, here’s what you can change:
- Within the first few weeks of term, you can change courses.
- You can also look into changing your accommodation. If you don’t get on with people in your flat, you can move within your halls. You could even move location all together and move to a different house or halls.
- Push yourself to get involved in a society. This automatically means a new friendship group and something to fill your time with if you’re feeling a little lost.
- Make sure you register with either the University Doctors or a surgery in Southampton. When you can’t easily get home for an appointment and your parents aren’t there to calm you down, it’ll be a relief to know that you can just go round the corner.
There is, also, plenty of support available around the University and the Union. Nightline operates 8pm to 8am every night. There is, also, the advice centre located above the Stags on Highfield Campus and The University offers Enabling Services, which is located just across the road from Jubilee Sports Centre.
Whilst many who have a bit of a wobble are very happy they endured it and stayed on, do not feel pressured into staying at university if it doesn’t feel right for you. It might be a bit scary at first, but there is always a way out and a way to improve your experience.
Here is some of the best advice from experienced students:
It was really odd post-Freshers just suddenly knuckling down and trying to focus, and being someone with a really close-knit friend group and relationship beforehand, it was weird to not have this again. The best way to solve it? Talk to everyone, make some great new friends and try and get involved in as many things as possible! Make your uni experience your own, and don’t worry! Plus buy some cheap aspirin for Freshers Flu as it is part of the experience! – Robert Pratley
Tom suggested ways to deal with illness…
My advice to any one who does get ill, unhappy and/or stressed during that period is to not be embarrassed or hesitant to speak to your personal tutor or use Enabling Services. Don’t put it off or avoid it if your struggling, as these things can help you partially get back a sense of control. This is especially true for us blokes, as at first I turned my nose up at getting this help as I thought it would be weak of me to seek it, and remembered taking the mickey out of this kind of stuff with my mates back at secondary school. – Tom Townend
Whilst Mackenzie gave some useful tips for registering at a GP.
Take advantage of the fact that there’s a GP called Highfield Health next to Jubilee. They usually have same day appointments and I’ve found they are SO much better than the Uni Health Service. Nothing is worse than being sick and NOT being at home to have your parents around, so having a good GP is important. (Like even when I had food poisoning, Highfield Health went super out of their way to have anti-sick medicine delivered to me!) – Mackenzie Brown
Whilst physical health is important, Tom gives some advice on coping with your mental health.
I cannot commend the University’s pastoral and counselling services enough for those who find themselves dealing with more than anyone should have to cope with – Thomas Randall
So if you start feeling have a little wobble after freshers has ended, don’t fret, it’s natural.