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Cheesy Chips and cheap drink: welcome to university life

Tips on how to survive the first year...

Packing up my room with my friends, discussing what we are expecting from uni didn’t even come close to the reality of my first year of uni.

Once I stepped foot in my new house I knew that all I wanted to do was explore, make friend and for my mum to give up unpacking and leave me to begin the newest chapter of my life, entitled ‘my mad life at Nottingham Trent’.

After unpacking everything and meeting my new house mates, the compulsory drinking began allowing everyones nerves to settle and friendships to be made. Freshers week was a massive blur of fancy dress, cheap drinks, minimal sleep and cheesy chips.

 We were lucky to have amazing fresher reps who helped us adapt to fending for ourselves, saving money and dealing with copious amounts of alcohol along with early mornings. Once we got our 9 day freshers week out the way, plus another week to recover from the freshre’s flu we were then all suffering from, we could start our new lives in Nottingham.

At the beginning it was all about trashy student nights and cheesy music until I found people who enjoyed the drum and bass scene which put an end to drunk nights at the student union! For anyone who appreciates electronic, I would recommend Nottingham as your choice of uni. For the past year I have seen too many high flying and talented DJs for stupidly cheap prices.

For the people who know their music, there is Dogma where every Thursday you can see a well known DJ for only £1, or there is the social for more up and coming DJs. Detonate at Stealth is the most well known drum and bass/dubstep night which have been graced by the likes of Shy fx, High Contrast, Danny Byrd and Doctor P or there is Highness Sound system on monthly for the reggae heads out there which is one of my favourite nights out in Nottingham.

My advice to anyone starting uni at Trent is to never hold back from doing what you love. Everyone at university are so diverse and accepting of everything that you don’t need to enjoy all the same things to make friends. I would also suggest making friends with some of the locals as they will always know more about what goes on than any student.

When shopping don’t be tempted by deals such as ‘3 packets of chicken breasts for £10’ unless you know they will be eaten because I can guarantee that most of the time at least half will end up mouldy in the bin.

Remember to more unnecessary things you bring to uni, the more you have to bring home again plus all of the irrelevant things you pick up during the year.

If you plan to live off a basic loan and an overdraft, don’t, because it doesn’t work and you’ll end up trying to live on £5 a week; get a job!

Although it is very tempting to be lazy in the day time, try to get out the house because the year will shoot by and you would have felt like you wasted a year sitting inside.

When finding a house for second year take time finding a house and don’t get over excited by the first nice one you find as there are lots of houses out there all targeted at students.

Spend time making your room homey, because when you want some alone time it’s the only place to go to.

Try hard not to procrastinate, because you’ll find yourself staying home alone at the end of term whilst everyone else has finished and is partying.

Quick tips

  • Don’t get on the wrong side of your house mates, because you are effectively a stranger to them and they therefore have no loyalty to you and no reason to carry on being nice.
  • Don’t be afraid to confront people if they aren’t pulling their weight.
  • Don’t spend the whole year worrying about getting your deposit back because no matter how hard you try you probably still won’t.
  • Have fun and don’t take everything too seriously because you’ll end up wasting a year and not making many friends.
  • Join a social specifically for the social aspect, the nights out are crazy.
  • Being a promoter for a night club generally gets you in for free.
  • Anything embarrassing will be forgotten swiftly as soon as someone else does something drunkenly stupid, which rarely takes long!
  • Never be afraid to dress up, you look better if you go all the way with your costumes than just do half the job.
  • Learn some easy recipes before going to uni and how to use a washing machine..

Federika Ronchetti

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