it seems to be getting to that point now where people have received their UCAS offers, and are finalising their choices for university in september. whilst these can be scary times, they're also immensely exciting as well. here are my top 10 things every fresher should take to uni (speaking from experience)...
1.) Blu Tack.
this may seem a little bit obvious, but it can be easily looked over in the rushed packing. blu tack not only is good for the obvious use, but it's quite fun to play with when you're procrastinating doing that big essay. it's also good to be able to share it around with your new flat mates.
2.) Posters and Pictures.
moving on from the blu tack, what good is it having blu tack when you've got nothing to stick on the walls? posters+pictures are essential in making your room look and feel like home. i printed out loads of photos of me and my friends from the summer, and had them all around my room - although, make sure you don't get them at boots! it's a bit of a rip off, go online as there are tonnes of printing websites that will do 50 free prints. posters are also really good to have all over the place, and also give people an idea of what music/celebs/style you're into.
this is one of those things which is definitely personal preference. university in this generation (god excuse how boring and old i sound) does revolve around drinking - it's probably more to do with gaining confidence to enjoy yourself in the strange new social surroundings. this idea is my own opinion, so don't take this to mean you have to, as i know a lot of people who don't drink and have a good time - just minus the hangover. personally, i think bringing perhaps some form of spirit or shot that everybody can share is a good way of getting to know people and getting involved. a cheap bottle of shots (usually in a garishly bright colour) or a bottle of jaegar (or cheap substitute) will normally suffice.
a nice link from the previous point, straws are another thing which everyone usually wants, but no one thinks to bring. when you're predrinking, straws are such a saviour - especially for drinking fast, and if you don't want to smudge any lipstick. again, it's a good social thing as well, as everyone will thank you a lot when you whip out the straws. my housemate last year in freshers had tonnes of straws, and to this day we depend on her in predrinks!
5.) Playing Cards.
playing cards are essential for predrinks. there's an endless catalogue of rowdy games that can be played with these, and if you can, get some 'quirky' ones - we own a set of harry potter playing cards which (for some unknown reason) add to the fun. ring of fire is a classic playing card drinking game, and a simple one is to get someone to guess 'red or black' and if they lose... drink. a cheap and cheerful asset to your freshers pack.
it's probably a given that everybody owns a onesie these days, but just in case you haven't got one yet - get one. there will be days when you don't have any lectures, days where you are hanging, days when you're cold, or just can't be bothered - and there's nothing more comfy than a snuggly onesie. whether it's a plain one, a fleeced one, or a rabbit one, any onesie is welcome at university, with many students (me included) living in theirs. primark do super cheap and comfy ones, and most shops have started doing their own versions.
7.) Fancy Dress.
this is something i definitely wish i'd bought more of - it would have saved many panicked shopping trips. there are going to be lots of dress up nights, especially during freshers week - so make sure you are prepared! generic nights could include neon night, army, beach, school disco... so make sure you have a suitable amount of bright colours, khaki, and maybe bring your old school tie along just in case! face paints may also come in handy. i know nottingham has a great fancy dress shop called Luvyababes, which literally has EVERYTHING you could wish for when dressing up!
8.) Face Wipes and...Stuff.
face wipes are one of those things i think people may forget - or at least, seriously underestimate the amount you may need. one pack may not get you through the first week, as i assume you'll have lots of face paint and writing to get rid of. with the increase in drinking, and probably a sudden increase in the amount of chips you eat, your skin may suffer - so make sure you're taking off your make up and stick to a cleansing routine so you don't suddenly break out in spots. now, the and stuff part... we're all adults, maybe bring some condoms - just in case! better to be safe than sorry after all!
9.) Door Stop.
my halls didn't supply door stops, as they were fire doors and you are - technically - supposed to keep those closed... but that's not very social, is it? i think one key thing to do when you first move into your halls is to keep your door open, it lets people think that you're friendly and want to talk to them, and you can nosy when people move in. a door stop is something that should definitely be in your luggage. just make sure your halls managers don't see it too much.
10.) An Open Mind.
as cheesy as that sounds, it's probably the most vital thing to bring to university. you're being thrown into a situation which is completely alien, with a group of people from all over the place, and you're expected to live with them?! weird. luckily, it's normally the best time of your life - just keep the mindset that everyone is in the same boat as you, everyone wants to make friends, and you will probably find yourself making friends with people you'd never have thought you'd be hanging out with - and they will be the best people you'll ever meet!
so, i hope that hoped a little bit. im jealous of all you freshers this september as i enter my boring third year :( have a drink for me :) xo