In the past, new students told us that they wanted more activities at the start of their first year to help them settle in and meet students from other years.
In 2012-13, for the first time, we ran The Great Start, a new initiative organised jointly by the University and the Students’ Union.
Undergraduate full-time students starting this year received a personal welcome to the University during orientation week from one of our many Friends of Arriving New Students (FANS) – current students who are studying their subject.
The FANS met new students in small groups to plan out their first few weeks at the University and made sure they didn’t miss any essential course-based inductions. FANS also ran tours of the facilities, passed on useful information and planned social events.
What people said
Feedback from our initial survey has been very positive. Students said they felt welcome, and feedback showed that the project increased a sense of belonging to the Schools and University for everyone involved.
Thanks to all those who helped to make us first-year students welcome to the University and to all the FANS!
My Fan for the Politics and IR was brilliant, extremely helpful, kind, cheerful. An amazing person.
I was really impressed by the Great Start scheme this year, it all looked fantastic, very professionally done, and seemed to give the students a real helping hand.
While the overall feedback has been good, there is of course also much we learned from our first year. We are continuing to collect and analyse feedback and we’ll be holding focus groups to plan an even better Great Start for next year.
If you are a current student at Westminster and want to get involved in The Great Start 2013-14, get in touch with us by emailing Nima Takodra at [email protected]