Starting a new educational journey is never easy and when meeting or even making new friends, even more so. Know that what you are feeling, the feeling of butterflies in your stomach and the worry or complete excitement of being in a new area and meeting these new people that you are completing this journey with, are completely natural feelings to have and the other members of your course would also have the exact same feelings as well.
The best way to kind of slightly pass over the main feeling of worry and even fear is to have someone who has gone through it before to sort of explain in a way of what might happen during the first day and how a friendship can start.
In my personal opinion each course has a different way of welcoming new students in the first few weeks at UAL, so don’t worry if what I am telling you does not match up to what you will experience. However if you are joining BA Performance: Design and Practise then this would definitely be a bit of a heads up to what could happen.
From what I can remember from my first day, the first years had to meet up with the whole course including the second and third years, which allowed us to sort of meet and say hello to a few people before everything started. I was a little lucky because I knew a few people from the foundation I did at UAL before I started, so it was a little easier to meet new people and become friends with them. If you do know people from your previous collage or school, it does make things a little easier at the time - but still introduce yourself to new people as well. Don’t be afraid to say hello to them. When we had this little meet and greet between us as first years, the head of our course came in to the room and gave all of us a welcome speech as first years and a welcome back to the other years, to which we then had a year timetable breakdown as to what to expect during this first term and the types of projects that we were likely to be doing as well as asking any questions you may also have as well.
Once that was done we were asked as a whole year (first years only) to return to the main studio room where we would then have our photos taken and have our first project brief of the term. There was also a break in-between where we had a chance to introduce ourselves to each other and it was definitely the best thing to have, as it gave us students a chance to meet, chat and have a little laugh as we got to know each other.
Once we had our photos done and we had our project brief, I remember that the project involved a lot of working in pairs and to be honest as scary as it sounds it was a good way to meet and talk to new people as well as a way of working together as well, so it was a very good introduction project to have.
As the week went along it became a lot easier to talk to new people in my opinion, and to be honest it didn’t have to be about anything in particular just a chance to talk, for example you could just be helping them or even looking for the location to the room of your next lecture or workshop or even discussing what it is you want to achieve or get out of your three years or what you would like to achieve before or once you leave and for me it was through these discussions and helping people I was able to make friends and I’m glad that I did.