As our new students get ready to start their Trinity adventures, here are some insider tips:
1. There is no need to ever pay for tea and coffee on campus if you don’t want to. Any number of societies on campus regularly hold coffee hours in either House 6, the GMB. The Chaplaincy also does a free lunch on Tuedays. There’s also plenty of people to meet and make friends with in these places as an added bonus.
2. There are plenty of international students everywhere. Don’t hold off joining a society because you’re worried you’ll be the only international student there. Trinity is full of international students, and this is reflected across almost all societies and clubs.
3. Don’t be afraid of bureaucracy. Ireland is fairly easygoing as a country. If you’re coming from a US school, you may be used to forms/immigration etc needing to be completed very quickly after arriving and the consequences for not doing so are severe. Ask other people how they’re getting along with things, the likelihood is you’re all at the same point! As the Irish will tell you, “Keep calm, it’ll all be grand.”
4. Join everything. There’s no point in the year where it’s too late to go to your first debate or society event!
5. If you’ve made your first step of starting to hang out at coffee hours or clubs, try to keep an eye on what social media networks people around you are using. Some societies or clubs tend to cluster on certain sites and you could find out about lots of impromptu get-togethers over Twitter or a specific Facebook group that otherwise mightn’t be obvious.
Elaine is a Trinity Global Room Student Ambassador and runs the Airport Meet and Greet Service for new international students.