Sheffield students on...their first days in Sheffield

Carmen, Portugal

Freshers' Week is a great week to make your first friendships, everyone will be quite eager to get to know one another, as you will all be scared of the same things at the same time. All in the same boat. However even though I had been living in England before, I did experience a culture shock, I had a different ideology of what having fun was like then. But everyone respects the way you are and you don't have to follow any crowd if you don't want to. Now I am a bit up for anything.

Carmen, BA Modern Languages, Portugal

Arriving in Sheffield was an exciting time for me. I was looking forward to settling down in a new city, to meeting new people and to discovering what the city had to offer. I was also a bit nervous, and the first few days did seem lonely despite being surrounded by lots of other students who were certainly feeling the same way I was. The Freshers' Week activities do help to keep you busy and in no time I was talking to students from all over the world and the UK who were just as excited and eager to meet new people. The first few days and even weeks, the atmosphere is electric with freshers settling in, making friendships, taking up new activities, joining clubs and societies and enjoying freedom in a new place. It is a great experience, and although many people are homesick at first, this quickly passes as things fall in place and lasting friendships are formed.

Catalina, MA Leadership and Management, Romania

Catalina, Romania
Magdalena, Germany

I spent my first night in Sheffield couchsurfing (via the website) and moved in the next day. It was very strange walking to Endcliffe with only my tiny cabin-luggage sized suitcase (I sent everything else by post). Funnily enough I had my definite ‘Sheffield is right for me’ experience on that first day walking up Broomhill: I spotted Sean Bean getting out of his car just in front of the Broomhill Friery. The first days were definitely strange, surreal and overwhelming. I was living out of that tiny aforementioned suitcase. But you settle in so quickly!

Magdalena, BA International Relations and Politics, Germany

I was very nervous about living alone for the first time, but I was also very excited to start a new period in my life. I arrived to Sheffield on the first day of Freshers' Week, so I could make as many new friends as possible. Since I lived in a university accommodation, it was easy to meet new people. When I got there, I simply knocked on everyone's door and introduced myself to them. This was an opportunity to exchange phone numbers right away and we ended up exploring the city in little groups later on.

Fanni, BA Architecture, Hungary

Fanni, Hungary
Adam, Poland

I was so scared of speaking, undeniably! It was my very first time in England so I had to get used to speaking English most of the time. Fortunately, my flatmates were really helpful and made the transition truly smooth. Also the events during Freshers' Week helped me to bond with people even more!

Adam, BA Architecture, Poland

I took part in both the Orientation Week and the Intro Week. I chose the Meet & Greet option which meant I had no problems getting from the airport to Sheffield. I'd fully recommend both of them as none of my flatmates took part in the Orientation Week and I felt like an information stand afterwards. The core of my friends were formed during Intro Week however after joining societies and starting classes I made many more with common interests and outlook on life.

Monika, MA Material Culture Studies, Estonia

Monika, Estonia
Paula, Malta

I started my Masters as a mature student. Even though many of the students were younger than me, I found it quite easy to make friends as in reality everyone is in the same boat more or less. Everyone is there 'alone' and ready to make friends so it wasn't hard at all. The Department had organised a day out which was sort of an ice-breaker for all of us and a quick tour of the surrounding of Sheffield which was a great help.

Paula, MA Landscape Architecture, Malta

When I first arrived in Sheffield, I was equally eager and terrified. The first day was a continuous hustle, settling in, opening a bank account, getting around the city and so on. Later, as I took part in Freshers' Week and later, in Intro Week, I started feeling more and more comfortable. Honestly, the Romanian community helped me a lot, and I am grateful for that. If you are an EU student, look for your kin and ask them for help. Moreover, during those first two weeks, I managed to make some friends: not a lot, but good quality. Highly recommend you take part, dear reader!

Andrei, MEng Aerospace Engineering, Romania

Andrei, Romania
Polina, Bulgaria

Overall, I am a stressed person. So moving to a different country and starting Uni was a terrifying experience for me. I met people along the way who taught me it is also exciting - so don't miss Freshers' Week. I went clubbing then, confirming that it was not the past-time for me but also met lots of different people who were just like me. I met all of my friends here on my first academic social which was tea and biscuits - even if it a little forced and you are scared, still go to as many events as possible at the beginning - it will pay off in the long run.

Polina, BA Journalism Studies, Bulgaria

The University offered an International Orientation Week for International students, which made my first days in university significantly easier. It allowed me to make friends, get to know the city and we were provided help with practical things, like opening a bank account. The orientation week helped me to ease into the university lifestyle and prepared me for the Freshers' week. During Freshers' week I participated in several give-it-a-go sessions (including dodge ball and sushi making), went to the student's union club nights and activities and sports fairs. All of these helped me to make more friends and as everyone was new to university, people were very friendly and eager to get to know one another.

Elina, BA Business Management, Finland

Elina, Finland