Annually, the University of Sussex welcomes thousands of new students to our Falmer campus and every year the Student’s Union and Brighton based clubs and businesses increase the quality and breadth of the Freshers Week events. Logically then, Freshers Week should be one of the best weeks of your university experience. Let’s face it though, for many freshers, it can sort of suck.
Not for a lack of epic events though. This year there was a huge variety of events ranging from Club Tropicana featuring CamelPhat to DragSoc’s Glitterball with Novympia and Alfie Ordinary. Beyond nighttime events, there were plenty of non-drinking events including the Pier Party, the Café Crawl and, of course, Freshers Fair. The Union provides something for everyone. Similarly, Brighton’s local businesses provide freshers with many choices. The Haunt hosted the first Fat Poppadaddy’s of the academic year and Pryzm hosted Brighton Freshers’ EPIK Wednesday’s Beach Party amongst many other Freshers’ events.
There is a multitude of ways to enjoy Freshers’ Week as a first year yet many still don’t. Despite the thrilling events, many students can easily become overwhelmed with being away from home, making new friends or even Freshers’ flu. This is why I’m a firm believer that Freshers’ Week is really for anyone but freshers.
In second year or even further on, you no longer feel required to stick with people you don’t know at events. Instead, you go with your nearest and dearest. Last year I went to the Freshers Festival headlined by Wilkinson. Whilst I had fun, it was my second night on campus and I didn’t really know anyone so couldn’t just let loose. On top of that, I hadn’t been exposed to much drinking culture so didn’t want to test my limits. Which meant that for me, the best part of the night was dancing my way through campus with my flatmate whilst blasting Britney Spears out of our phones at two in the morning.
Similarly, this time around you know what you enjoy. Having spent a good chunk of first year in awe of DragSoc, I knew I had to go to their biggest event yet, Freshers’ Week’s Glitterball. Not only did I have the best time but I had the honour of interviewing the performers which inspired this [article]. Gone are the years of pretending to enjoy yourself with a bunch of strangers at an EDM club night. Instead, do something you love.
You also know your limits. Not to sound like your parents – but as a first year, you can easily feel pressured to go out every night or do things you wouldn’t normally do as that’s what you see around you. But as a second year, you have your personal boundaries and if your friends are good people, as mine can be when they want to be, then they know not to push those boundaries. Meaning you can enjoy Freshers’ Week at your own pace and comfort. I found myself craving a night in to watch Netflix and you know what? I did that.
On top of that, throughout every year there are hundreds of great events. For students, there is the Winter Ball, various society socials, student aimed club nights like Revenge’s FOMO or C U Next Tuesday.
Similarly, Brighton hosts an array of amazing cultural events. Brighton has theatres galore, global tour stops by your favourite artists at the Brighton Centre and Brighton Dome, Brighton Pride, Brighton Fringe and so much more to look forward to.
So, whether your Freshers’ Week was the best week of your life so far or just ‘meh’ keep in mind that it gets better second time around.
Chin up, there’s lots to be excited about as a first year or not.
Image credit: USSU