Join societies
Extra-curricular activities often provide the backbone of one’s your university experience. Whether you fancy writing for the student newspaper or joining something more niche like the wine society or a cappella singing, there will almost certainly be a society that grabs your imagination. Joining societies will provide you with other new sociable outlets and introduce you to likeminded people with regular opportunities to meet up. We’re not saying that you should go and join every society under the sun: be selective and do some research beforehand.

Be accepting of everyone
In first year in particular, you come into contact with a vast number of different people. As you struggle with names and faces, remember everyone will become familiar with time. Good first impressions are vital; this is the pool of peers from which your friends will be drawn in the coming years. Be engaging and take the time to meet people and learn about them. Make the most of your first year by being friendly, listening and smiling. Lots.

Get involved in sport
Whilst some universities take sport more seriously than others, every university will have the provision of sport at some degree. Sport allows you to be a part of a team and enable you to develop close bonds with teammates both on the court or pitch. Universities often take great pride in their sports teams, and the BUCS competition is hard fought, leading to the new friendships and experiences your time at university will be built upon.

Don’t work TOO hard
We aren’t saying that work doesn’t matter, but for many courses the work is introductory. Believe it or not, universities actually want their students to have a bit of time to focus on settling into their new environments and making new friends. Many courses only set the lowest grades for passing into second year. Be sure to back up your work. Hard drives are cheap, and technical disasters are known to strike at the worst times.

Nightlife
The words ‘university’ and ‘partying’ often go hand in hand. Clubbing is undeniably one of the key attractions of university and club nights are often packed. Queues in Freshers’ Week are long, but don’t be put off. We think that the success of a good night is down to the people you’re with, not where you are. Even the smallest university towns have thriving nightlives! It will be out on the town where you will bond with people, so don’t miss out. Don’t feel like you have to go to every event, however, as Fresher’s Flu will eventually catch up with you!
But ultimately…

BONUS: Be yourself
The above only works successfully if you act yourself. Naturally, a lot of people see university as a clean slate, but that doesn’t mean you have to change as a person. Trust in your character and the skills which have got you into university in the first place.