#Jan starters - How to use social media to settle into freshers life
When you’re starting university, one of the main things that’ll probably be on your mind, is the prospect of meeting and living with new people.
Who am I living with? – Will we get on? – Can ‘anybody’ cook?!!
Honestly, try not to worry too much, everyone is in the same boat! Here at UWE, we have some useful ways for you to use your favourite social media apps to make the move into halls life even smoother.
Finding & getting to know your future housemates
This is a great way to make your move to university less scary. Look at the HallsLife Facebook groups and look for your new housemates! (You can also find your course mates on these groups).
Next step: Create a group chat
When you start to find your new housemates, the next best step is to create a group chat with them all. This is a great way to get to talk to each other, get to know everyone and start creating friendships with the people who you will live with in your first year of studies! Talking to your housemates will help diminish any nerves and anxiety on moving in day, as it takes some of the pressure off. Most of the time, students feel as if they are moving in with friends rather than strangers!
You can use these ice-breakers on your new group chat or with anyone you meet when you arrive at UWE. But firstly, if you’re not sure what to talk to your new housemates about on the group chat, here are a few suggestions to get you started:
"What’s everyone studying?"
This a great way of locating and getting to know students on the same course as you. You will more-than-likely be able to relate over shared academic interests.
"Where is everyone from?"
By locating other students who have come to UWE from the same city or area, you may be able to quickly forge strong friendships beyond your circle of new flatmates.
"What freshers' events does everyone want to go to?"
Planning what events you want to go to is a great way to build up the Fresher’s excitement for yourself and your housemates. Once you have found events to go to, book tickets for it! The tickets are always cheaper in advanced.
"Any Netflix suggestions?"
Who doesn't enjoy a good series binge? It sounds simple, but even sharing film or series recommendations can be a really effective way to get to know your hall neighbours, and to help you decide upon the next six-season epic. Just watch out for those spoiler alerts.
I’m worried about some of my future roommates’ profiles and interests – what if we don’t get on?
It’s important that you stay open minded about the flatmates you meet on Facebook and try to remember that it’s human nature to present the best versions of ourselves online.
Try to not make judgements about them online, and don’t forget that anything said online can be perceived different to how you/they meant it. Meeting them on the first day in person and getting to know them is much more important than making your mind up on them before you properly meet them, and your opinion could be hazed if you see something they post online that you don’t agree with.
Even if after you have moved in you don’t feel like you have much in common with your housemates, just remember living with a range of people is a great opportunity to make friends with different people and even if you do not share the same interests as them, you should make the most of the opportunity anyway. This is great life experience that will prepare you for life after uni!
Making connections that last
You have at least two months from joining the Facebook groups to arriving in halls. This is plenty of time to share your interests with your flatmates and learn what you have in common beforehand.
The beauty of living with a mix of people is that you learn from each other and gain new life experiences. You can plan activities to do together and help the journey into independent living. Many students stay friends with the people they meet at university for the rest of their lives.
What if I don’t join a Facebook group?
Some students may choose not to use the Facebook groups to find their flatmates or just wait for the element of surprise when they arrive.
If Facebook isn’t your thing you can still find some useful information about moving in on our accommodation website and view the list of upcoming Fresher events on the SU website. Even though Facebook is the most widely-used platform it may not be a social media channel you use – which is absolutely fine. You might want to follow our Twitter and Instagram channels instead.
“To be honest, I actually didn’t speak to my flatmates on Facebook (although I wish I did!). I think most of my flat did get in touch via Facebook and if possible, I would definitely advise you to do that! It’s a great way to get know your flatmates before moving in. Kinda wish I’d been a bit better as I was then playing catch up on what was going on, but it wasn’t too hard to catch up!”
Follow UWE Accommodation on Social Media to stay up to date!
And good luck finding your flatmates!!
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