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Bangor Uni’s special welcome day for local students

Around one hundred new students from north Wales, who are about to begin a new degree course at Bangor University, and who will be travelling  daily to the university, got a special opportunity to meet each other and get to know the university recently (16 September).

A Peer Guide assists a student at Bangor.A Peer Guide assists a student at Bangor.Much is made of ‘Welcome Week’, the pre-academic session week when new students settle in to their new surroundings, make friends and find out what they need to know about the University, their course and their surroundings.

Of course, programmes of events are open to all students, whether resident at University or commuting, some are for all students and others arranged by particular Schools’ at the University. ‘Ice-breaker’ activities can involve quizzes, trips to the beach and a range of other activities, so that students get opportunities to meet and get to know each other.

But the opportunities to make friends in those early days are different for commuting students, who  may spend less time actually in and around Bangor, but will remain living in their family home.

Recognising this, Bangor University runs a special day to give non-resident students a ‘head-start’ in getting to know each other.

Maria Lorenzini, Director of Student Experience at Bangor University explains:

“For all students, University is a very new and exciting time. It is about widening your horizons, meeting people from different backgrounds, securing great friendships and of course, actually completing your degree. Being a home student should not stop you from getting the best university experience possible but sometimes it can be more challenging for home students to feel a full part of University life. This is why Bangor University’s Student Support developed a programme specifically for students that will be living at home.”

The programme has now been running for a number of years. Over 130 local students attended last year, with many saying that the day had given them more confidence to start University as a home student and had allowed them to make friends.

Anonymous feedback included quotes such as: “It made me feel excited to start University, I learnt about the services available to me but most of all supported by new friends and staff” and

“The pre-entry programme was a great icebreaker before the madness of Welcome Week”

New students attending the session had their own tour of the University and a chance to browse information stands from a selection of services the university offers and receive advice from existing students,  they received a general welcome and introduction to University life and talks from student support services, the students’ union, and a number of other University initiatives.

Bangor University Peer Guides, trained second and third year students were also be on-hand to help out during the whole day. Peer Guides play an important role at Bangor in supporting new students while they make the transition to university life. During Welcome Week, they organise activities; tours of the University; welcome students and ensure than new students get to know each other.

Publication date: 17 September 2014