Staff views of freshers’ week
The boxes have been unpacked, freshers’ flu has arrived and lectures have begun: freshers’ week is well and truly over. Inspired by The Guardian, we asked two of our staff members to give us their view of one of the busiest weeks in the College’s calendar.
Jan Brighting, Nurse
I love the first few weeks of term. It’s surprisingly well organised and managed by staff and students. For me it’s an opportunity to meet every new student, reassure them that we are all here to support them and I get to walk miles in the line of duty, running to and from my surgery to Trumpington Street Medical Practice. My main responsibilities are: registering every fresher at the doctors, getting written plans for students with a history of anaphylaxis, organising prescriptions and appointments for students with complex medical conditions, and – last but not least – reassuring homesick students and anxious parents. No two days are the same and the problems I encounter are as unique as the student. I love the problem solving aspect of my work and enjoy the atmosphere in College; we are all working together to give students the best start to what we hope will be illustrious academic futures!
Pat Aske, Librarian
In past few years I have found that running library inductions at the beginning of freshers’ week is not a good idea; the freshers’ timetable is full of promise and how can I compete with the knitting society or the various workshops and quizzes? So now my hope is that each student will attend a brief introduction and tour of the library towards the end of the week. I do enjoy meeting all the freshers in this way and I hope it makes them feel more confident about using the library and getting the most out of it. Even though everything I say in the introduction is on the library webpages, it is much better to meet the students in person and give them a sense of how the library works. I may not get many opportunities to meet them otherwise, as a lot of my time is spend at meetings or with rare book readers in the basement! The first week of the new academic year is always exciting and having all our students back reminds us of what we are here for.