Full disclosure: I dropped out of university after a week. So, my shitty O-Day might’ve helped that decision, or maybe I thought it was going to be crap before it started. I’m not sure.
What I am sure of is that my O-Day was not good. Let me also clarify that I didn’t have an entire week to endure.
My day was split into two parts: O-Day and O-Night.
O-Day was a career-fair-esque type set-up, with booths for different faculties and societies. It was a weird event, with no real direction as to where I should be in regard to my degree. I had to fight through the crowds to find a booth that ended up telling me what I already knew. There wasn’t any free stuff and the room was stuffy and squishy. One day in and I already felt out of place.
The crowd of people eventually filtered themselves out of the university’s main hall, and after being there for two hours I had no sense of comfortability or a greater knowledge of what uni was to entail. They were simply throwing information at the wall and hoping it would stick in someone’s brain.
A more organised approach to O-Day would’ve fared better; with dedicated days and times for certain faculties. As a journalism student, I really didn’t want to fight my way through science and commerce stalls and the poor set up meant everyone was just wandering around with no idea of how to find the things that were relevant to them.
O-Night was a completely different beast. They had put on a “festival” (in very strong inverted commas) on the campus lawn that was completely mismanaged. It wasn’t as terrible as Fyre Festival but it came pretty damn close.
We arrived to intense security that made me take my shoes off (the only thing they found was dirty socks). We walked into the campus green and saw a stage with a DJ playing house music at 3pm, as students stood awkwardly side-eyeing each other.
Being able to drink to take the edge off would’ve been fine but the line for the bar was 40 minutes long. The night dragged and dragged- the only benefit was that I managed to make friends through the communal annoyance that we were still at the stupid party.
Now, again, I dropped out of uni after a week, but I still stand by my word that my O-Day was not a good time. Maybe things would’ve been different if I had an O-Week, or if I had a better mindset, but the start of my uni experience was aggressively average.
My advice? Lower your expectations of any sort of university planned activity and you might have a shot of actually enjoying it.