The first thing I would suggest doing is to make sure that the process to set-up your University accommodation is underway. There is not really too much you can do until you know what your accommodation situation will be, but its important to have an idea as to your options at the least. After you have sorted out your accommodation everything in terms of your university side should be complete and all that’s left to do is to prepare from home for the year ahead. Normally you find out your accommodation on results day or within a couple of weeks your acceptance is confirmed; however, if within a months time you haven’t heard, it is vital that you ring up and talk to someone to find out where you will be staying as this may be useful when it comes to preparing what to take for your first year.
Another important thing to do once you have found out your results is to make sure that you have had all the injections that you need before heading to University. Make sure you are up-to-date with your MMR jabs and that you are protected against Meningitis, as in your first few weeks at University this can spread quickly and can be nasty if caught. I know that many of you may not like injections and may take the risk of not getting them, but it really is worth the two seconds of slight pain! I am so glad I had mine as quite a few people at my university caught meningitis during the first few weeks at University and ended up spending most of their Freshers’ week in hospital which must have sucked big time. Don’t worry though if you cannot get it done before University, if you do not have time to then just make sure you book an appointment as soon as possible with the doctor at your University and they will be able to give you the injection. You might find that when you register at the doctors, they offer them on the day. However, the wait can be long and Hana had to wait 4 hours for hers, so definitely get them before if you can.
Moving on to the more exciting tasks, in my opinion anyway, the shopping side. Once I had found out my University accommodation, I checked the inventory and the accommodation website to make sure I knew what was included in the halls and what I needed to take. Most Universities will have an inventory list and will have a list with suggestions of what to take. Obviously you do not need to take everything they say and a lot of the stuff you may want to purchase when you are living in your halls however, I was too excited and decided to buy all the stuff they suggested and more! I barely fit everything in the car … ha ha ha! Some of the stuff I already had for example; my clothes, laptop, everyday essentials, make-up and shower products. As I was moving into a place with a double bed, I had to purchase double bed sheets, duvet, covers and a lot of cushions to make my bed feel homely and look great. I probably didn’t need all 9 cushions and pillows but, oh well, it looked pretty! I then had to purchase all my kitchen utensils, pots, pans, cutlery and general kitchen products, as I went self-catered and had to bring all my own kitchen stuff. I brought most of my kitchen things from Ikea as it was cheap and I didn’t know what I actually would be using. I did bring a lot of kitchen stuff and only ended up using half of it, but that will be explored more in another blog post. Anyway, after finding out about where I would be living, I began collecting bits and bobs that I would need either in my room, bathroom or kitchen, which was the bit I enjoyed the most.
The final thing I would suggest is looking up with some University pages on social media sites. For example my university has a twitter and Facebook page. Alongside that, it had separate pages for all the university accommodation and for all the societies. Joining the Liverpool University twitter account enabled me to keep up to date with everything that was going on at the University and I was also able to see all the Fresher events that were being advertised. I joined the halls university accommodation page, which was useful as before I got to uni I was able to see who was in my flat and talk to some of the people staying in the same halls, which was great as I felt like I had already made a few friends before even starting. A great page to join is your course page, if you have one, as through this I met two girls who I am really good friends with now. Because I met them before uni started, we agreed to meet before some of our first lectures and head in together so in the beginning weeks I was not sitting alone and had made some friends already. I ended up staying friends with those girls and have sat with them in all my lectures since … well the ones I attended anyway ha ha! So overall I would advise that following your University social media pages is a great way to start putting yourself out there and to start making friends that you may have for the rest of your university life. If you don’t have any social media though, I would suggest making an account on Facebook. You do not have to use it often or put any pictures up, but it’s a great tool for connecting with new people, not only before university but during it as well. As well as looking up and getting connected with the social media pages for your University, I would suggest keeping an eye out for Fresher events that they will release on the social media pages and if there are any you are interested in buy the tickets in advance as you will get them cheaper and it will guarantee you a ticket. I made the mistake of not buying anything until I got to University, so most of the events were sold out meaning that while my flatmates were out heading to events, I was alone in the flat.
Well, hopefully this post has given you some ideas of what to do before starting at university. Obviously there are lots of different things you can do and need to do, and it differs between universities. But from my experience the activities mentioned above were the main things that I did between the period of finding out my results and starting University.
Please let us know if you have any further questions about anything mentioned or if you have any other ideas on what people could do / need to do before starting university then please comment below.