Where has the time gone – it feels like only yesterday that we were welcoming our students for Session 1 and it’s already Session 5!
As students poured into colleges and campuses, it is a busy and exciting task to get everyone welcomed and settled before classes begin. Pupils were handed a lanyard and welcome pack and the counsellors were quick to make everyone feel included and at home in their rooms.
Most of the campuses host a wonderfully British afternoon tea on Arrivals Day to ensure students are happy and fed. For many, it provides the chance to mingle with their peers and learn more about the people who are bound to become lifelong friends. Some immerse themselves in the English snacks, such as scones and jam, and delight in the chance to try English Breakfast tea, whilst others marvel at the breathtaking architecture as they munch on sandwiches.
Welcome and Induction Talks
After a chance to settle in, students are invited to attend welcome and induction talks to give them the chance to find out about the weeks ahead. As well as being walked through their timetable, excursions and activities, pupils are informed about the campus layout and things to do in their free time.
During the welcome talks, everyone is also given the opportunity to ask questions or share any concerns with our counsellors, who are always available to support students. Many pupils feel at ease after the welcome talk because they are more aware of the Session structure and their accommodation.
Sitting down for a group meal is a fantastic way to get everyone engaged in conversation and chatting with their new friends. After the excitement of arrivals, it is always nice for everyone to relax and talk properly, with lots of laughter erupting from the dining halls across all ORA campuses.
Full of delicious food and energised, students gathered after dinner to participate in icebreaker games. Designed to give pupils the chance to get to know each other in a casual setting, these games always prove to be a great way to get everyone laughing together.
Icebreaker games, including ‘Duck, Duck, Goose!’ and ‘Wink Murder’, got students revealing their relaxed sides as they joined in with friendly games, laughing as they did so. After the initially expected shyness, students began volunteering to play the games and encouraged others to join too.
Many campuses organise evening shouts – group meetings to complete a register and discuss the events for the following day. Most students were docile by this point, with the thrill of meeting new friends and seeing new places proving to be exhausting.
Aware of the breakfast time and the lessons running the next day, pupils sleepily wandered to bed for a good rest to prepare for the weeks ahead.