Will I Make Friends? My Newcastle University Freshers' Experience

Results day is around the corner and I am sure there are thousands of you scared but buzzing to see those results and find out if you got into Newcastle. The anxiousness, the excitement and the nervousness is driving you crazy but, the day finally comes, and you open those results, YOU GOT IN!

After results day, I spent the rest of the summer eager but nervous about moving to Newcastle, a place four hours away from my hometown. Like me you’ll probably take the long Ikea trip and indulge in the extreme clothing haul alongside watching some ‘Uni Tips’ videos on YouTube, am I the only one who watched every ‘My First Year Experience’ video on YouTube …nope, just me…ok.

Finally coming to Newcastle during Freshers was an experience to say the least, taking the long drive to Newcastle with a million of my things stuffed into the car I was beyond anxious and worried by what University would be like, I was worried about doing something wrong or struggling to find things or getting no help. As I finally reached my accommodation, I was already worried about the first hurdle, finding my room, keys and the right member of staff. But as soon as I walked into the reception, I was met by the Freshers Crew! They greeted me and reassured me they would help me with everything, I felt so at ease already knowing there were people ready to help this early on. This support didn’t stop, even during the whirlwind of registration, I found students and staff at every corner helping me figure out what I needed to do.

Yet, even with this support I was still worried about friends, for me as a person of colour I was anxious about if I would find people like me, if I would make friends in my course or on campus generally. But all those anxieties soon faded away once I met the Afro- Caribbean Society, during the Society Fair I got to meet the committee who immediately told me, “I shouldn’t feel alone ACS is a big family”, and that is exactly how I felt with ACS during Freshers, every event whether it was a cookout, club or games night felt like a big family reunion! During the events I was able to meet so many diverse students from across the African and Caribbean diaspora who I still call my friends till this day! Being a minority, ACS created an inclusive environment where my difference and culture was not ignored but celebrated.

Making friends may seem scary at first, but you do not have to worry about it. I found my friends through ACS but there are so many other opportunities to find friends, from Fresher events, accommodation inductions, course inductions. I promise you, from the time you meet your flatmates, to the long lines during registration, to the many day time and night-time Fresher events you will go to, to your initial course inductions and your first official day at University, you will make friends! Everybody is in the same boat as you and wants to make friends as much as you do, being open to talk to everybody and socialise is the key.

Freshers is a whirlwind, it is exciting and new, but It will be an experience you will never forget!

Blog post written by Kemi Adediran