Welcome New students

Top tips to get ready for Essex

A group of students talking

Being there for you from the start

We want to make sure that you settle into life at the University of Essex as smoothly as possible, so we’ve put together some top tips to help you along the way.

Things to do before you arrive on campus

Get yourself ready for life at University

Starting university can be a wonderful and exciting experience, but it can also bring its own unique challenges. It’s natural to feel nervous or overwhelmed during the first few weeks and it can be a while before you feel like you’ve found your feet. Take a look at the Student Minds ‘Know Before You Go' University of Essex guide (.pdf) for information and tips.

Still want more? Why not read what our students have said about preparing for life at Essex and what to expect when you are here.

Check out the Student Directory

Our Student Directory, is your one-stop shop hub of information about the University, your studies and the support you might need.

It's full to the brim with a wealth of information to help you with your day-to-day needs whilst at University. The only problem not knowing where to start? The following list is a collection of just a few helpful webpages you might need in your first few weeks when finding your feet.

Plan your journey here

Take a look at how to get to our Colchester, Southend and Loughton Campuses.

We can't wait to see you soon! 

Start packing

If you're living in campus accommodation, take a look at what's included in your accommodation and what you'll need to bring so you pack the right things...

If you're coming to our Colchester or Southend campuses, and packing really isn't your thing or you don't have much space in your suitcase, then you can order stuff before you arrive and it will be delivered to your room.

Alternatively, there are large supermarkets near all of our campuses, so you can stock up on household essentials when you get here. If you plan to do this, then it is worth checking beforehand to see which shops and supermarkets will be open nearby when you arrive, particularly as most will have reduced opening hours on Sundays.

Meet people and make friends

During your first few weeks at Essex try and introduce yourself to as many people as possible, this could be during our Welcome Week events or through some of the ideas below.

Social media

We've got loads of Social Media groups for you to find your new BFFs. We've got just about every possibility covered from country groups and accommodation specific ones. Just search Facebook Groups for ‘University of Essex’ to get started.

Clubs and societies

At Essex, we have over 165 sports clubs and societies with over 3000 members. SU clubs and societies are a great way to get support and experience in your subject from fellow students, or if you just want to see some friendly faces from your home country. From the departmentally-focused and culturally-based to the downright weird and wonderful (Harry Potter Society, anyone?), there's an SU society for everyone.

Faith Centre

We're proud of our vibrant and diverse multicultural community and we understand the importance that faith, belief and spirituality play in the lives of many people. Our Faith Centre is open to anyone, of any religion or none. It's a welcoming place to meet, chat and make friends.

Download our apps

From finding your way around our bustling campuses to checking when that library loan is due, our official mobile apps will quickly become your new best friend.

  • Find Your Way - Our University Campus is pretty big and that means you might need help finding your way around. Our Find Your Way app is essential - trust us, you’ll need it. Search your app store for FindYourWay@Essex
  • Pocket Essex - Gives you instant access to events, your course info, timetables, modules and marks, library loans, contact details and much more. Search your app store for Pocket Essex
  • Umii - Join thousands of other students on Umii, the SU's app that helps you meet people, make new friends and find your tribe. Download for iOS , Download for Android

Pack your schedule full of events 

Check out the events calendar and get involved in a wide variety of fun activities to welcome you to University life in your first week and beyond.

Register to vote

If you’re eligible to vote in UK local and general elections, you’ll need to make sure you’re on the electoral register once you’ve settled into your accommodation, using your new address. Don’t miss your chance to have your say – join the UK electoral register online.

three students walking up a tree covered path on a sunny day
Find your people - join 1000s of other Essex students on Umii

Meet people and make new friends through the SU’s awesome app, Umii, which has already helped thousands of Essex students connect with each other. Whether you want to chat to other students with the same interests, find a study buddy, or someone to just rant about life with, Umii is the place to find your people. It’s time to level up your social game at Essex - download the Umii app now:

Shortcuts to success at Essex

First in your family to go to Uni? 

Three students walking down the steps on the University squaresMany undergraduate students at Essex are the first in their family to study at university, and if that's you too - you're bound to have some questions about what it's like. Have a good look around our student webpages to find out more about support for settling in, plus help to ensure your wellbeing, support for students with disabilities, help with money matters, and planning for your future career.

Get involved with the Big Essex Award

Why not join the 6,000 students who have already taken part in the Big Essex Award, the University’s employability and skills award? There are over 100 different activities both on and off-campus to complete and everything will be formally recognised by the University of Essex and included on your Higher Education Achievement Report (HEAR); your secure digital transcript of all your academic and extracurricular achievements.

Derby Day Crowds
Derby Day Crowds
Essex Rebels Womens Team
Essex Rebels Womens Team
Peer mentors
Any questions? Just ask.

Most new undergraduate students have questions about starting at university. Our Student Services Hub is the place to go for the information you need. Your question matters and you'll get answers from experts. You could also speak to one of our peer mentors. A peer mentor is another student (normally from your department) with experience of the University who can offer practical advice and information, and point you in the right direction to services that may be available to you.

Derby Day Crowds
Derby Day Crowds