Fresher's Week

This past week at Brunel, and most other universities across the UK, was a week full of festivities for new students called Fresher's Week.

Basically, it's a week-long party across campus for students.

Brunel has three bars and one nightclub ON CAMPUS. That's right. There is alcohol sold on campus. Definitely something you wouldn't ever see in a lot of American universities. At least, not at any of the ones I've visited.

Two of the bars are run by the university itself (The Hub and Bar Zest), while the other bar, Loco's, and the nightclub, called The Academy, are run by the Student Union. Which means they are all student run. Again, something you would never see on campus in the States.

Fresher's Week had a lot of great activities during the day such as sports, meet and greets, club fairs, and lunches. But at night, the activities were basically school-sponsored debauchery. The freshly independent 18-year-olds (you only have to be 18 to drink here) went crazy while partying it up and swapping spit with each other in the nightclub. And for those who couldn't get a ticket into the packed-out club, there were other activities in the two other places in the student center that served alcohol. And for those that didn't feel like getting their drink on indoors - well many just stood around outside or watched the bands play in The Quad while toasting their first year of college using their tallboy cans.

Being the responsible postgraduate student that I am, I didn't really get involved in the total obliteration of brain cells every night. But I didn't just sit in my room all night either. Actually, I could be found on the balcony of the Hub, enjoying a pint of Guinness and getting to know a few of my fellow international students and people-watching.

After all, I'm used to campus-welcoming events such as magicians, free popsicles, and movies on the Drillfield. Not nightclubbing, binge drinking, and hanging out at the official "Hangover Hut" the morning after.

I knew that drinking was a big part of English culture but I always imagined it to be just a quiet night in the pub for a pint after work or after dinner with a couple of friends. So Fresher's Week was definitely unexpected. And while the majority of campus might enjoy their binge drinking, I think I'm going to stick to my quiet pubs and pints.