Tuesday, 13 September 2016

Dundee Freshers Week!

Freshers week: a week where universities tries to introduce themselves and encourage you to get to know each other as the first year starts university.

Before I arrived at my university halls, I found a couple of my flatmates on a Facebook group, Katie and Alex. They both seemed lovely and friendly, but that didn't alleviate my anxiety towards moving away and starting university. I feared not making friends and not being able to keep up, which I imagine are normal fears when starting university. When I arrived, after the madness of moving in and getting sorted, my flatmates and I sat down together, and they were so welcoming, and put me at ease at once. We were really lucky with the people in our flat. Everyone wanted to go out and be social, we even had a flat dinner out the first night.

My photo wall in my room so I don't get homesick!

What I found out is that freshers week isn't just about going out at night and drinking, it is about getting to know everyone, the city and what the university has to offer. I tried to take advantage of all the free events that were on to make the most of freshers week.

The first few days of freshers week was a blur. Lots of people were still moving in, and when we went to the nightclub in University of Dundee union, it was always packed. Dundee is a really friendly city, and it is crawling with students, so there was a great atmosphere. Everywhere you turn there is someone giving you a leaflet about the next event happening.

My Flat: Alex, Mel, Katie, Ruaridh and Stephen
On the Monday night, we decided to go to the union, and I had a bit too much too drink (I was trying to be careful). The morning after, I woke up with high blood sugar and ketones in my blood (Ketones happen when your body doesn't have enough insulin, and makes you really unwell). It gave me a shock, because I was just trying to have fun but ended up being really unwell and had to take a couple nights out of freshers week to recover. I have learned that it is okay to take a step back, know your limits, and stick to them.

There were so many events on this week. A sports and freshers fayre showing off all the sports activities and societies offered by the university, giving away free pizza and other food (one of the best parts), loads of acts in the student union including MTV, Nick Grimshaw and Blonde and an outdoor cinema showing Harry Potter (which was very cold!). All have helped me get to know the University of Dundee and the city.

Beca and I
Freshers week has been amazing, definitely a great introduction into student life. I'm dreading the workload of university now, having been given a full timetable and a long reading list, having to juggle work and social life, I feel it is going to be difficult. Trying to fit all these things in, as well as having Type 1 Diabetes, is going to be hard but I imagine it will be worth it.

Katie, Alex, Lucy and I in the Dundee Union
I have already made some amazing friends in my flatmates, Mel, Alex, Katie, Ruaridh and Stephen, and on my course, and have reconnected with a friend who I went to school with and has followed me to Uni, Lucy, and I imagine I'll meet lifelong friends.

Freshers week has been crazy but amazing!

Until Next Time,

Alyssa

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My name is Alyssa Faulkner. I am a Type 1 Diabetic Teen living in Scotland. I currently use a Medtronic insulin pump and an Enlite CGM, and am a volunteer for Diabetes Scotland.