26 August 2019 • Content team
5 tips to have a great introduction week
International Business student Florina Ungureanu from Romania remembers her introduction week vividly. She enjoyed every minute and made friends for life. Now she’s part of the organisation of the biggest introduction event in The Hague herself: the Oh Oh Intro festival on 5 September. For all first-year students, these are her 5 tips to make your introduction time unforgettable.
1. “Go! And don’t skip a day”
“The intro week means meeting new people in a fun and informal way. You will get to know both the campus and the city. It is the perfect way to kickstart your programme and make friends which will then make you feel less lonely when the university starts. It makes you feel more confident, informed and better integrated. Make sure you plan practical activities (for international students: like opening a bank account, getting an insurance etc.) around the introduction week activities. Don’t skip a day. Trust me: the funny stories you will hear the next day will make you regret you missed out.”
2. “Dare to ask”
“This is my most important advice: ask! Don’t be shy to do so. Our coordinators who were second and third-year IBMS-students were a big help to me. They were very friendly and offered us insights on so many things that I would have not been able to find out otherwise. How to get around the campus, important information about classes, books and teachers, insurance and opening a bank account, even where to eat at 5am after a night out. There are things that you find out in a formal way from your mentor or teachers, but there are certain things that you can find out only from students who have experienced them firsthand. And as a plus, when students want an answer to something and you already know it, this is an opportunity for you to help them and become friends.”
3. “Get out of your comfort zone”
“If there are several introduction week activities at the same time, then choose the one that your friends are less likely to attend, since it will push you to meet more people. Intro week is a chance to get out of your comfort zone. No matter the programme you study or future job, interpersonal skills are a must to possess and they are acquired in times like this. Thus, I encourage you to constantly change the group of people you speak to. Meet as many people as you can.”
4. “Update your parents once in a while”
“At most universities in Eastern Europe there’s no such thing as an introduction week. My mom said she felt very relieved that THUAS was offering the students this opportunity to integrate and build a sense of community feeling. As a parent you worry about your kid a lot. For my mom it was a big thing that I went to Holland. So don’t forget to update your parents once in a while to let them know that you’re alright.”
5. “Don’t forget your raincoat & sunscreen”
“Regarding the logistics, always wear sunscreen. In a backpack, have your wallet with ID and pocket money, external battery, hand sanitizer, some non-perishable snacks and a reusable water bottle. Wear casual or comfortable clothing and walking shoes (cause you’ll be walking a lot on some days). And make sure to pack a raincoat since Dutch weather is always unexpected and better be safe than wet, right? Oh, and don’t forget to bring your upbeat, fun energy and be open to new and interesting experiences alongside awesome people!”
All the things you should know about the start of the study year can be found on this page: https://www.thehagueuniversity.com/study-choice/help-in-choosing-your-study/start-information and https://www.ohohintro.nl/. Then there are some handy booklets which contain dozens of tips to help you find your way as a student in The Hague. Don’t forget to check out https://www.thehagueuniversity.com/tipsandtricks of The Hague University and http://iiam.nl/tusg/ by event planner organisation IIAM.