We are working in partnership with the Student’s Union to get ready to welcome all of our new and returning students to campus this year, with a vibrant and enhanced on-campus experience, which will include a series of online and in person events to help them settle in, make friends, and get used to life on campus. 

This approach draws on all our experience from 2020/21 and we’re going to be building upon everything that worked so well running our main programme online to make sure that the student experience is the same for all of our students, no matter where they’re joining us from or how they’re going to be studying.

Our on-campus activities will focus on departmental inductions, supported by a range of wider opportunities for students to get involved, make connections, and get to know Essex and our Students’ Union. However, this year, we are additionally planning for an enhanced Welcome, supporting earlier arrivals to our campuses through online and in person activities, as well as running an extended Welcome through to the end of October so students will receive a high-quality experience regardless of when they start with us.

Here’s what all our new and returning students can expect:

Online Registration and Welcome

Online Welcome will start from 1 September for the majority of students. The first thing they’ll need to do is register using our online registration system and then they’ll get access to our Welcome portal on Moodle. This is where students will be able to find all the most up-to-date information, support and advice about starting at Essex.  This year we’ll be focussing on adding lots more enhanced content, like videos and improved graphics, to the site and making sure we channel students to key content first including:

  • information about their department and our new departmental forums. These will help students and staff to get to know each other and network before they arrive on campus. 
  • an introduction to our values, including an understanding of our expectations about their own behaviour at Essex, linked to key areas like consent, harassment, and our code of conduct.
  • an outline of our Student’s Union and the ways in which it can support them during their time with us. 

Early arrivals programme

Our early arrivals programme is a fun and engaging support package aimed at all students who may need to arrive at Essex or the UK early to quarantine or isolate, because they’re travelling from countries on the red or amber list. This programme will be live from 3 September and will provide information and activities about studying at Essex and virtual social opportunities to support their health and wellbeing. Anyone travelling from a red list country will need to quarantine in a managed hotel, but we will have students from amber list countries arriving and isolating on campus from 13 September. We’ll be publishing full details of the early arrivals programme by Friday 20 August.

Activities on campus

This year, we’ll be providing our students with a range of high-quality teaching and social activities when they arrive on campus to make sure that everyone feels part of our community. 

Just like with their teaching, we’re aiming for a blended experience, providing a high quality and safe student experience both online and on campus, including social events and networking. Smaller events will be delivered in person, making use of outdoor spaces wherever we can, whilst larger events will be delivered online.  

If you need any help organising your own online events, including how to make them more engaging then our Technology Enhanced Learning team are the people to speak to.

We’re also introducing our new Registration and Welcome hubs at Colchester and Southend Campuses this year, which will be up and running from 1 September to 22 October and form the main point of information and support for students on campus. 

The Welcome Hub will act like a signposting service, helping to answer students’ questions and making sure they know what they’re doing, whilst the Registration Hub will be where they can pick up their student card and complete key parts of Registration like their Right to Study check.

How to get involved

We are looking for volunteers to help with this year’s Right to Study checks and Welcome activities. This is a great opportunity to make a positive impact on the experience of our new and returning students at the start of their journey with the university. Just sign up to get involved.

Useful links