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Freshers’ <strong>Guide</strong><br />

<strong>2010</strong><br />

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Welcome to the CUSU Freshers’ <strong>Guide</strong> <strong>2010</strong><br />

Hi!<br />

If you’re reading this, then you’ve filled in the forms,<br />

done the interview, and satisfied your offer conditions. So<br />

CONGRATULATIONS!<br />

This guide is here to give you a taste of life in <strong>Cambridge</strong>,<br />

whilst answering your questions (and reminding you to pack<br />

a few things!). Whatever worries you have about beginning<br />

student life, everyone is in the same situation, andmost of<br />

these worries will be gone by the end of freshers’ week, we<br />

promise!<br />

<strong>Cambridge</strong> really is an exciting place to live and to study,<br />

with thousands of things to do and get involved with while<br />

you’re here. The best way to discover the hundreds of clubs<br />

and societies on offer in <strong>Cambridge</strong> is at the CUSU Societies<br />

Fair at Kelsey Kerridge Sports Centre on the 5th and 6th<br />

October. Find out more details at www.cusu.cam.ac.uk/<br />

societies/fair/.<br />

This guide contains a lot of useful stuff, but if you’d like<br />

to meet fellow freshers or if you want more information,<br />

join our facebook group (listed below) or have a look at our<br />

website. Other than that, we look forward to seeing you all in<br />

freshers’ week! Enjoy the rest of your summer and if you have<br />

any queries, please get in touch.<br />

Contents<br />

CUSU<br />

What does CUSU do? 2<br />

How does CUSU work? 3<br />

The Sabbatical Officers 4<br />

The CUSU Team 5<br />

Campaigns 6<br />

HE Funding 8<br />

Faculty Reps 9<br />

Access 11<br />

Autonomous Campaigns 12<br />

Before you get here<br />

Your Checklist 18<br />

The <strong>Cambridge</strong> Language 19<br />

Useful Contacts 20<br />

Support<br />

Support & Advice 22<br />

n u s EXTRA<br />

National <strong>Union</strong> of Students<br />

Your free <strong>Cambridge</strong> card is great for<br />

discounts in town, but this twelvemonth<br />

NUS card lets you save money<br />

nationally and online. With discounts at<br />

leading retailers such as Amazon, your<br />

NUS Extra card will ensure that you get<br />

a student discount whenever it’s available,<br />

wherever you are.<br />

Order yours for just £11 at www.nus.org.uk, collect<br />

from <strong>Cambridge</strong> <strong>University</strong> Students’ <strong>Union</strong> (CUSU)<br />

when you arrive and begin saving money!<br />

Front cover photo by Jimmy Appleton, http://jma55.cantabphotos.com/; Printed by The Burlington Press Ltd in England<br />

Typeset in Myriad by CloudCover Media<br />

©<strong>2010</strong> <strong>Cambridge</strong> <strong>University</strong> Students’ <strong>Union</strong>. All rights reserved. Registered Charity No. 288365<br />

Website: www.cusu.cam.ac.uk<br />

For more information on Freshers’ Week and to meet your fellow students,<br />

search for “Official <strong>Cambridge</strong> Freshers’ Group <strong>2010</strong>” on Facebook.<br />

Student Parents 23<br />

Health 24<br />

Student Safety 25<br />

Students with Disabilities 26<br />

<strong>Cambridge</strong><br />

Nightlife 28<br />

Student Societies 32<br />

Getting Around 34<br />

CUSU Freshers’ <strong>Guide</strong> <strong>2010</strong> 1


CUSU – Your Students’ <strong>Union</strong><br />

What does CUSU do?<br />

It exists to represent your interests and ensure that<br />

every student in the <strong>University</strong> has a say in their<br />

<strong>Cambridge</strong> experience.<br />

CUSU brings together students from all colleges and<br />

departments to campaign for positive change in<br />

<strong>Cambridge</strong>. We make sure that student concerns are<br />

at the centre of <strong>University</strong> decision-making and also<br />

provide entertainment, services and welfare support<br />

for the benefit of students. As well as having <strong>University</strong>wide<br />

representation through CUSU, you also are also<br />

represented at College level by your college students’<br />

union (usually called a JCR or MCR, representing<br />

undergraduates and graduates respectively). CUSU<br />

brings together the JCRs and MCRs, along with<br />

the faculty reps, who represent you within your<br />

departments. CUSU is affiliated to the National <strong>Union</strong> of<br />

Students (NUS), meaning that <strong>Cambridge</strong> students also<br />

have representation at the national level.<br />

Campaigns<br />

Students are most powerful when they organise and<br />

cooperate as a collective body. CUSU provides a strong<br />

voice and practical support to actively pursue the issues<br />

you care about. This year we will be running a number<br />

of exciting campaigns on issues ranging from ethical<br />

affairs to student safety - read about some of them on<br />

pages 8 and 9 and you’ll have plenty of opportunities<br />

to get involved when you arrive. However, what we<br />

campaign on is up to you. So if there is any aspect of<br />

your subject, your College or <strong>University</strong> life that you<br />

want to improve, you can bring your ideas to CUSU<br />

Council and join up with other students to demand<br />

positive change.<br />

Representation<br />

There are lots of groups and committees in the<br />

<strong>University</strong> which are constantly making decisions<br />

which will affect your life at <strong>University</strong>. . Elected student<br />

officers represent you and influence these decisions:<br />

we voice your opinions at the highest levels across<br />

the <strong>University</strong>. If you have ideas for how student life<br />

can be improved and want to represent students to<br />

the <strong>University</strong> and the wider world, why not stand for<br />

election to one of the Officer positions on page 5 and 6.<br />

Services<br />

CUSU offers a huge number of services to ensure<br />

you get the most out of <strong>Cambridge</strong>. CUSU helps not<br />

only individual students, but also provides support<br />

and training for your societies, faculty representatives<br />

and JCR/MCR committees. Our offices, next to the<br />

examinations hall on the New Museums site (off<br />

Downing Street) are also the place to come to for<br />

quality colour/mono photocopying and binding at<br />

some of the cheapest rates in the city, and to collect<br />

your NUS Extra card, once ordered at www.nus.org.uk.<br />

From confidential, non-judgemental welfare support for<br />

individuals to our entertainment nights at local venues;<br />

assisting societies, to acting a ‘hub’ for JCR/MCR reps<br />

to share ideas, CUSU is constantly working to enhance<br />

your student experience.<br />

Advice<br />

CUSU’s Student Advice Service offers free, confidential<br />

and independent support to all students. If you feel<br />

you have been discriminated against, treated unfairly<br />

or would like to discuss something that is bothering<br />

you, contact us by phone or by email, whether it’s the<br />

first time you have a question or as a last resort. We can<br />

discuss your concerns with you, explore what options<br />

are available to you and represent you at a college level<br />

if necessary.<br />

You can come to the service with any issues or<br />

problems that you might experience as a student -<br />

from questions or concerns about your education or<br />

<strong>University</strong> procedures to a health enquiry or a mental<br />

health issue. We employ a full time, professional<br />

Student Advisor and CUSU’s three trained student<br />

support officers will also be able to provide support and<br />

representation.<br />

2 CUSU Freshers’ <strong>Guide</strong> <strong>2010</strong>


How does CUSU work?<br />

The umbrella of CUSU brings together all<br />

three aspects of student representation of<br />

<strong>Cambridge</strong>. You, the membership, elect all three<br />

groups, with each reflecting a different aspect<br />

of student life in <strong>Cambridge</strong>.<br />

For more information see our website at<br />

www.cusu.cam.ac.uk<br />

CUSU Executive<br />

The CUSU Team are a link between individual students and university-wide and national campaigns. There are specific<br />

representatives who look to voice the needs and concerns of specific groups, such as Students with Disabilities. Annually, the<br />

Sabbatical Officers (see page 9) are elected by all students, with the Part-time Officers elected by your JCR/MCR and Faculty<br />

Reps at CUSU Council.<br />

Turn to the CUSU Team if… you want to get involved with campaigns on issues such as Ethical Investment of <strong>University</strong> funds or<br />

Higher Education Funding and Fees, or if you want to volunteer for Access Schemes to widen applications to <strong>Cambridge</strong>…<br />

JCRs & MCRs<br />

Within your college, your college students’ unions (the<br />

JCR, MCR, or sometimes a whole college union) provide<br />

representation locally. You’ll elect your college JCR/MCR<br />

committee, who will speak up for you within college.<br />

The President and an External Officer also vote in your<br />

interests at CUSU Council, often basing their decisions<br />

on the results of Open Meetings held in college where<br />

you can let them know exactly what you think on<br />

specific issues.<br />

Your JCR/MCR is the place to go if… you want to get<br />

involved with college Ents, you want to campaign on the<br />

rent you are charged, if you want a friendly face to talk<br />

to for welfare support in college, or if you have a dispute<br />

with College…<br />

Faculty Reps<br />

Your faculty reps voice students’ opinions and<br />

concerns within each department/faculty. They<br />

attend the CUSU Faculty Board to organise central<br />

campaigns and can also each vote at CUSU Council,<br />

voting in the interests of the members of their<br />

faculty. You elect your faculty reps yearly, either<br />

in person in your department or through online<br />

elections.<br />

Get in touch with your Faculty Rep if… you want<br />

to campaign for changes to your course, library<br />

provision or lecture system…<br />

The Membership<br />

The student body forms the membership of CUSU,<br />

electing representatives to the bodies that co-ordinate<br />

policy formation, the day to day governance of the<br />

student union (including the enactment of policy, which<br />

is set by council, by the Executive – see above) and<br />

CUSU’s long-term development.<br />

CUSU Freshers’ <strong>Guide</strong> <strong>2010</strong> 3


The Sabbatical Officers<br />

Rahul Mansigani – CUSU President (president@cusu.cam.ac.uk)<br />

I represent <strong>Cambridge</strong> students to the <strong>University</strong>, the media, and on the national stage. My<br />

main role is spearheading student campaigns. I also provide support to your JCRs/MCRs, as<br />

well as clubs and societies. I studied Law at Robinson College, where I was JCR President.<br />

I’ve also been Treasurer at the <strong>Cambridge</strong> <strong>Union</strong> Society and fundraised with RAG. When<br />

I’m not in the office, you’ll probably find me in a cocktail bar or watching something at the<br />

ADC!<br />

Maria Helmling – CUSU Education Officer (education@cusu.cam.ac.uk)<br />

I train and guide Faculty Reps and College Academic Officers in pushing for change in your<br />

Faculties and Colleges, as well as actively campaigning with you both within and beyond<br />

the <strong>University</strong>. If things are tough academically or personally, I’m here to support, inform<br />

and represent you. When I’m not doing CUSU stuff, I enjoy long walks, Ceilidh dancing,<br />

singing, playing the violin, and baking (and eating!) cakes.<br />

Morgan Wild –CUSU-GU Student Support Officer (welfare@cusu.cam.ac.uk)<br />

I’m responsible for CUSU’s student support work across the <strong>University</strong> for both undergraduate<br />

and graduate students. This includes co-ordinating the Student Advice Service, supporting and<br />

representing individual students and leading welfare campaigns on a range of issues, from mental<br />

health to equality and diversity. I graduated from Sidney Sussex College last year in Philosophy. In my<br />

occasional escapes from the office, I enjoy relaxing in a good pub with friends, political campaigning,<br />

reading and watching rubbish TV.<br />

Andy McGowan – CUSU Access Officer (access@cusu.cam.ac.uk)<br />

My job is to help encourage students, particularly from underrepresented backgrounds, to consider<br />

applying to <strong>Cambridge</strong> or <strong>University</strong> more generally. I do lots of work with prospective students and<br />

co-ordinate student-run initiatives within <strong>Cambridge</strong>. I studied Law at Trinity Hall and was involved<br />

in a whole load of different things – from football, to college drama, and even being thrown down<br />

a hill in a huge hamster ball in the name of charity. When not doing CUSU stuff, I enjoy playing/<br />

watching football, going to gigs and just hanging out with my friends.<br />

Chris Lillycrop – CUSU Coordinator (coordinator@cusu.cam.ac.uk)<br />

I’m responsible for the <strong>Union</strong>’s day-to-day management; co-ordinating CUSU staff, officers,<br />

finances and office resources to make sure the executive has the resources it needs for<br />

campaigning and representation. I went to St Catharine’s and studied Modern Languages<br />

(MML) and I relax by hanging out with the <strong>Cambridge</strong> <strong>University</strong> Fire Troupe and enjoying<br />

long afternoons in the sunshine on Jesus Green.<br />

Sarah Peters-Harrison – CUSU Women’s Officer (womens@cusu.cam.ac.uk)<br />

As Women’s Officer I campaign against gender discrimination in the <strong>University</strong>, coordinating<br />

campaigns including challenging the gender disparity in exam results, unequal provision for women’s<br />

sports and objectification of women. I also support college women’s officers, push for change by<br />

engaging with the <strong>University</strong> administration and support individual students. I studied Theology<br />

at Murray Edwards College, and outside of office hours I enjoy partying, playing sport – especially<br />

football, jazz and classical singing and getting active about things I care about.<br />

4 CUSU Freshers’ <strong>Guide</strong> <strong>2010</strong>


The CUSU Team – Student Officers<br />

The work that CUSU does is split between 7 Teams, with<br />

around 30 students involved as Officers across the teams.<br />

These positions reflect the wide range of student concerns<br />

in the <strong>University</strong>, from the support available to students<br />

with Eating Disorders to addressing the differences<br />

Student Support Team<br />

in facilities between colleges. If you’re interested in<br />

representing students, campaigning for change or have<br />

a particular passion, then get involved – standing for a<br />

part-time Officer position is a rewarding experience that<br />

makes a real difference to students’ lives.<br />

Responsible for CUSU’s work relating to students’ mental and physical health, well-being and safety; it leads campaigns<br />

on welfare provision within the university and works with the Student Advice Service on individual student support.<br />

Team Members: Student Support Officer [Head of Team], Transport & Student Safety Officer, Anti- Racism Officer, Mental Wellbeing<br />

Officer, Sexual Health Officer, Eating Disorders Support Officer<br />

Education Team<br />

Your academic experiences are the focus of this team. It provides individual student support, runs campaigns on<br />

issues such as supervisor training and library access and also offers support over the exam season.<br />

Team Members: Education Officer [Head of Team], College Academic Officer (Undergraduate), Mature Students Officer, Faculty<br />

Academic Officer (Undergraduate), Faculty Academic Officer (Graduate)<br />

Access & Funding Team<br />

Leads campaigns on issues relating to Higher Education funding and student financial support, as well as encouraging<br />

university applications from students of diverse backgrounds through our student-led schemes.<br />

Team Members: Access Officer [Head of Team], Target Schools Officer, Higher Education Funding Campaigns Officer, Bursaries and<br />

Funding Officer, Black and Ethnic Minority (BEM) Access Officer<br />

Ethical Affairs Team<br />

Looks at the impact of <strong>University</strong>, collegiate, student and <strong>Union</strong> activities on the environment and broader society;<br />

and the interaction between social issues and student life.<br />

Team Members: Ethical Affairs Chair [Head of team], Environment Officer, Ethical Investment Officer, Ethical Consumerism Officer,<br />

Community and Volunteering Officer<br />

Common Room Support and Membership Engagement Team (CoMET)<br />

CoMET supports JCRs and MCRs in representing you in college, running cross-college campaigns and providing<br />

training and guidance for your college committee representatives. Also, they are responsible for publicising CUSU<br />

Council and Open Meetings and making sure that CUSU is engaged with the student body, both undergraduates and<br />

graduates.<br />

Team Members: President [Head of Team], Communications Officer, College Facilities Officer, Rents Officer, Common Room Support<br />

Officer, Membership Engagement Officer<br />

Democracy and Development Team (D&D)<br />

Responsible for the long-term development of CUSU, the D&D Team also makes sure that CUSU remains democratic<br />

and student led and follows the procedures and processes that are laid out in the constitution.<br />

Team Members: President [Head of Team], CUSU Chair, Secretary, Undergraduate <strong>Union</strong> Development Officer, Graduate <strong>Union</strong><br />

Development Officer<br />

Resources Group<br />

The Resources Group is responsible for providing services to students and supporting student run societies and sports<br />

clubs.<br />

Team Members: Coordinator [Head of Team], <strong>University</strong> Sports and Societies Officer<br />

CUSU Freshers’ <strong>Guide</strong> <strong>2010</strong> 5


Campaigns<br />

As a <strong>University</strong>-wide students’ union, CUSU campaigns on<br />

issues that affect students’ lives, as decided by you, our<br />

members.<br />

Some CUSU campaigns take the form of high-visibility,<br />

public events that seek to draw in as much direct student<br />

participation and media attention as possible, others are not as<br />

high-profile, involving collaboration on <strong>University</strong> committees<br />

and working groups that can take years at a time. Finally, some<br />

campaigns work through the networks of college and faculty<br />

representatives to apply pressure on a single issue in many<br />

places at once. Here are a few of the high-visibility campaigns<br />

that we, and hopefully you too, will be a part of in the coming<br />

year:<br />

Supervisor training:<br />

While the diversity of supervisions is enriching and stimulating,<br />

students need to be guaranteed that they receive excellent<br />

teaching whatever College or Faculty they belong to. CUSU<br />

campaigns for mandatory supervisor training in terms of<br />

general technique as well as paper-specific requirements.<br />

Supervisors should be aware of what skills first year<br />

undergraduates might lack when coming straight from<br />

school, be able to support students with specific learning<br />

difficulties, and avoid discrimination. CUSU encourages closer<br />

collaboration between supervisors and lecturers, so that<br />

supervisors are up to date with actual course content and exam<br />

format.<br />

Libraries provision:<br />

Making study materials such as power point slides, question<br />

sheets, reading lists, and handouts, available online is easy<br />

and cheap, and all students will benefit from it. Some faculties<br />

already do it, some don’t. CUSU campaigns for better online<br />

materials in all faculties and departments.<br />

Exam feedback:<br />

CUSU campaigns for more transparency and clear criteria in the<br />

process of marking exams. Exam feedback guarantees greater<br />

transparency as well as enabling students to learn from it.<br />

Interactive Online Timetables:<br />

You could be attending lectures relevant to your choice<br />

of course, or simply out of special interest, in faculties and<br />

departments other than your own – if only you knew about<br />

them. CUSU campaigns for a personalized online timetable<br />

listing university-wide lectures which you can tailor to your own<br />

preferences.<br />

Ethical Consumerism:<br />

The Ethical Consumerism duo are working on increasing<br />

awareness on and making progressive changes to buying<br />

Students need to be<br />

guaranteed that they<br />

receive excellent teaching<br />

whatever College or Faculty<br />

they belong to.<br />

food and clothing. This will involve expanding the amount of<br />

colleges with Fairtrade status (currently 10 colleges are applying<br />

or have this status) and supplying fairtrade or ethical clothing<br />

to societies. Look out for progress and support changes in your<br />

college!<br />

Socially Responsible Investment:<br />

CUSU has been campaigning for the <strong>University</strong> to implement<br />

an Ethical Investment Policy that reflects its commitment to<br />

human rights, education and sustainability. This means that the<br />

university should not be investing in companies which fail to<br />

uphold basic human rights and protect the environment within<br />

Get Involved!<br />

If you care about an issue and have a little time, you<br />

can help us run a campaign; whether it’s designing<br />

publicity, organising demonstrations or standing<br />

for election, there are loads of ways for you to make<br />

an impact. If you would like to find out more, email<br />

president@cusu.cam.ac.uk.<br />

6 CUSU Freshers’ <strong>Guide</strong> <strong>2010</strong>


Campaigns<br />

their sphere of influence. This means asking investment<br />

managers to ensure that they have a screening process to<br />

ensure that money is invested properly. So far the campaign<br />

has looked at Shell, the Arms Trade and will expand into the<br />

coming year.<br />

Right to Recycle: This campaign is underwritten by the<br />

principle that we should all be provided with the opportunity<br />

to recycle in colleges and in departments. The Environment<br />

Officers in the CUSU Ethical Affairs team are running this<br />

campaign and aim to improve and concrete students’ right to<br />

recycle while in <strong>Cambridge</strong>.<br />

Equality and Diversity: Each Michaelmas term, we organise<br />

<strong>Cambridge</strong> Stands Up Week which celebrates equality and<br />

diversity in <strong>Cambridge</strong> and fights against bigotry, stigma<br />

and discrimination. Throughout the year, we work with the<br />

autonomous campaigns, to ensure that the diverse needs<br />

and backgrounds of students at <strong>Cambridge</strong> are respected,<br />

that every student has equal access to their education and to<br />

student life and that every student has an equal opportunity<br />

to make the best of their university experience.<br />

Welfare Provision: Whilst support in <strong>Cambridge</strong> is often<br />

excellent, there can be large differences in the quality of<br />

welfare provision available to students across colleges.<br />

We campaign for all students to have access to a college<br />

nurse and for every pastoral tutor to be given compulsory<br />

tutor training, so that everyone has the support they need,<br />

regardless of college. We also lead campaigns against any cuts<br />

to welfare provision at either a <strong>University</strong> or a college level.<br />

CUSU Freshers’ <strong>Guide</strong> <strong>2010</strong> 7


Higher Education Funding<br />

One of the most important events this autumn is the<br />

publication of the Browne Review, which will report<br />

on the future of higher education fees. Many people<br />

expect the Browne Review to recommend higher<br />

tuition fees, with a potential removal of the current<br />

cap on fee levels. CUSU strongly opposes both of<br />

these options.<br />

We are coming dangerously close to a free market in<br />

Higher Education, where the focus of student choice<br />

is not based on the appeal of the university or course,<br />

but on cost. This is unacceptable and something<br />

which students’ unions across the country are<br />

campaigning hard against. The effects of the Review<br />

could impact on generations of students that follow<br />

us.<br />

This is the basis for one our most important and<br />

exciting campaigns this year. CUSU opposes tuition<br />

fees in principle, and will join with other students’<br />

unions to oppose any increase in the current cap on<br />

tuition fees. We will also challenge any proposal that<br />

could make <strong>Cambridge</strong> more expensive than other<br />

universities in terms of tuition fees. One of the most<br />

crucial messages for prospective students is that<br />

<strong>Cambridge</strong> charges the same level of fees as 99%<br />

of Universities. If this were no longer to be the case,<br />

then this could make our widening participation work<br />

much more difficult.<br />

CUSU will be working closely alongside the NUS,<br />

Anglia Ruskin <strong>University</strong> and other Students’<br />

<strong>Union</strong>s to lead an exciting and dynamic HE<br />

Funding Campaign, engaging both students and<br />

the community at large. We will be lobbying MPs,<br />

writing letters, organising public meetings and<br />

demonstrations to voice our concerns and organising<br />

other visible activities. This is an issue that affects<br />

you, so make sure you get involved: information will<br />

be available at the Freshers’ Fair and on the CUSU<br />

website from September!<br />

Whatever the outcome of Lord Browne’s review,<br />

CUSU still needs to work hard to tackle the ‘fear of<br />

debt’ amongst many prospective students. It is vital<br />

that students are able to access up-to-date and<br />

accurate information, both before and after they<br />

arrive. Throughout the year, the Access and Funding<br />

Team will be coming up with ways of better ensuring<br />

that all students are aware of the financial support<br />

available to <strong>Cambridge</strong> students, support which is<br />

amongst the most generous in the Country.<br />

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8 CUSU Freshers’ <strong>Guide</strong> <strong>2010</strong>


Faculty Reps<br />

“I have two instincts: I want to have fun, and I want to change<br />

the world. I have a chance to do both.” – Bono<br />

Faculties control the greatest part of your education here<br />

at <strong>Cambridge</strong>: they choose which courses to offer, decide<br />

how they are taught, and set and mark the exams. As such,<br />

your Faculty will be every bit as important to you as your<br />

College. In your Faculty you will get to know students from<br />

across the Colleges, find books in its own specialist library,<br />

and attend most of your lectures.<br />

Faculty Reps work within each Faculty in a similar way to<br />

the JCR/MCR Presidents in your College; they represent<br />

students’ views to the <strong>University</strong> on anything that affects<br />

students, whether that’s getting a new snack machine,<br />

allocating grants to postgraduate students, or completely<br />

changing the content and teaching process of your course!<br />

There are usually two Undergraduate Reps and one<br />

Graduate Rep in each Faculty. Together they form the vital<br />

link between the people who study in the Faculty and<br />

those who run it. A Faculty Rep is a student elected by<br />

students on their course, who then acts as their voice to<br />

the Faculty staff.<br />

As a Faculty Rep you can have huge influence on the<br />

way your course is taught. But apart from working on<br />

academic matters, Faculty Reps often organise socials for<br />

their Faculties, ranging from film nights to end-of-year<br />

garden parties – a great way to meet the students on<br />

your course! Because there are usually three of you, you<br />

can shape your own role and put as much time into it as<br />

you like.<br />

You will have the chance to work out issues in your<br />

Faculty alongside senior academics of your subject, and<br />

CUSU will train you in committee skills, public speaking,<br />

and how to make things happen. Faculty Reps also have<br />

the opportunity to represent students at even higher<br />

levels in the <strong>University</strong>: on CUSU Council and on the<br />

Council of your School (a group of several Faculties).<br />

Faculty Reps are part of an active network, campaigning<br />

on things that can enhance your studies enormously.<br />

Do you want to be in the room when the most important<br />

decisions about what goes on in your Faculty are made?<br />

You can put yourself forward for nominations at the end<br />

of November, with elections taking place a week later. To<br />

find out more, contact Maria, the CUSU Education Officer<br />

(education@cusu.cam.ac.uk), the Faculty Reps of your<br />

Faculty, or your departmental secretary. (You should find<br />

their contact details on your Faculty website.)<br />

There are also other ways to get involved in education/<br />

academic affairs at <strong>Cambridge</strong>: come along to a meeting<br />

of the Education Team, stand for Academic Affairs Officer<br />

in your College, or volunteer for individual campaigns.<br />

Whatever your ideas or your availability, get in touch!<br />

Academic Stress<br />

Academic life at <strong>Cambridge</strong> can be intellectually<br />

exciting and enjoyable, but it can also be stressful<br />

and overwhelming at times. Like at other<br />

universities, most students will experience stress<br />

as a result of their studies at <strong>Cambridge</strong>. Personal<br />

issues can have an impact on your ability to cope<br />

with academic pressures, as well as the range of<br />

activities and experiences that most of you will<br />

engage with and enjoy during your time here.<br />

Remember that meeting deadlines isn’t everything<br />

and that the important thing is that you enjoy<br />

your time in <strong>Cambridge</strong>. If you are finding your<br />

academic workload too stressful, it can be useful<br />

to talk to your Director of Studies, who has a<br />

responsibility to help you find a better way of<br />

managing a demanding academic schedule. There<br />

are also a range of resources available on the<br />

<strong>University</strong> Counselling Service website for dealing<br />

with stress and other issues and you can also drop<br />

in to the Student Advice Service and discuss any<br />

problems or concerns you might be having.<br />

CUSU Freshers’ <strong>Guide</strong> <strong>2010</strong> 9


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CUSU Access<br />

<strong>Cambridge</strong> has a welcoming, exciting and varied<br />

student population, with students from all over the<br />

world and all walks of life and one of the fairest<br />

admissions processes in the country.<br />

Despite this, there remain many outdated stereotypes<br />

surrounding <strong>Cambridge</strong> and myths about the application<br />

process, which often influence the decisions of prospective<br />

students, especially those from backgrounds which have<br />

little experience of <strong>University</strong> or <strong>Cambridge</strong>.<br />

CUSU runs several Access schemes, where student<br />

volunteers meet with pre-<strong>University</strong> students to show them<br />

what <strong>Cambridge</strong> is really like. Another aspect of CUSU’s role<br />

is to ensure that once students come to <strong>Cambridge</strong>, they<br />

enter an environment which enables them to make the<br />

most of their time here, both academically and socially.<br />

Here is just a taste of some of the schemes that you could<br />

get involved with.<br />

CUSU Shadowing Scheme<br />

Every year in February CUSU invites hundreds of Year 12<br />

students with little school or family experience of university<br />

to ‘shadow’ a current undergraduate; going with them to<br />

lectures, supervisions and social activities for 3 days. This is<br />

a unique opportunity to experience day-to-day student life<br />

at <strong>Cambridge</strong> firsthand. It is an amazing scheme that really<br />

changes the lives of the sixth-formers involved and helps<br />

to dispel the misconceptions that too many students have<br />

about what it means to be a student at <strong>Cambridge</strong>.<br />

This is always one of the most popular Access events<br />

amongst both prospective and current students. This year<br />

we are hoping to get more student clubs and societies<br />

involved so that the sixth-formers can see just how diverse<br />

student life is in <strong>Cambridge</strong>.<br />

Target Schools<br />

Target Schools is a scheme by which current students go<br />

into a state school in their local area to talk to students<br />

about <strong>Cambridge</strong> and university in general. The aim is to<br />

replace myths with real, honest and up-to-date information<br />

about being a student here. It takes an hour or two of your<br />

time at most but can have a real impact.<br />

There is an online database of schools so that you can<br />

easily find local schools and you will be provided with<br />

the resources to help you give a talk. Most volunteers<br />

find it very rewarding, finding rapid changes in people’s<br />

impressions and often help schools to make more<br />

applications. The CUSU Access Officer is even able to try<br />

and organise a talk with a school in your local area on your<br />

behalf.<br />

Open Days<br />

As well as open days run by the <strong>University</strong> and colleges,<br />

CUSU runs a series of open days throughout the year.<br />

Volunteers are needed to help run the days, give tours and<br />

talk to prospective students.<br />

CUSU Freshers’ <strong>Guide</strong> <strong>2010</strong> 11


Autonomous Campaigns<br />

CUSU supports five autonomous campaigns – the<br />

Women’s Campaign, Black Students’ Campaign,<br />

Lesbian Bisexual Gay and Transgender (LBGT)<br />

Campaign, iCUSU (international students) and the<br />

Disabled Students’ Liberation Campaign. These<br />

<strong>University</strong>-wide campaigns represent the needs of<br />

traditionally disempowered students; holding events,<br />

providing support and ensuring that every student’s<br />

Women’s Campaign<br />

The Women’s Campaign is a dynamic force for<br />

change in the <strong>University</strong> through the campaigns<br />

we coordinate, the resources and support we<br />

provide and the voice we give to the women of<br />

this <strong>University</strong>. We speak out against individual<br />

and institutional practices which negatively affect<br />

women. The Women’s Campaign is the student<br />

voice for gender equality in the <strong>University</strong>, so<br />

we engage with students through events and<br />

campaigns, and work within the <strong>University</strong> to push<br />

for practices which proactively embrace diversity.<br />

Head of Campaign: Sarah Peters-Harrison womens@cusu.cam.ac.uk<br />

For more information see: www.womens.cusu.cam.ac.uk<br />

Head of Campaign: Rin Ushiyama international@cusu.cam.ac.uk<br />

For more information see: www.international.cusu.cam.ac.uk<br />

We’ve run exciting campaigns on objectification,<br />

consent, cervical cancer awareness, and violence<br />

against women, and coordinate the hugely<br />

successful <strong>Cambridge</strong> Reclaim the Night demo.<br />

Through speaking out in <strong>University</strong> committees,<br />

and organizing protests, trainings and public events,<br />

we’re making sure that anti-sexism is a top priority.<br />

We are always looking for passionate people to get<br />

involved in campaigning for gender equality, so if<br />

you want to fight sexism – get in touch!<br />

<strong>Cambridge</strong> <strong>University</strong> Students’ <strong>Union</strong><br />

i n t e r n a t i o n a l<br />

iCUSU – International students<br />

CUSU International, iCUSU for short, works for<br />

the betterment of international student life at<br />

<strong>Cambridge</strong>. Our International Freshers’ Week will<br />

most likely be your first encounter with us, where<br />

you’ll meet us at the coach stop or the train station.<br />

We have a wide range of events planned this year,<br />

including our very successful and incredibly popular<br />

iCUSU formals, weekly Academic English classes,<br />

and an Exam Relief Session during Easter term. But<br />

voice is heard. Because <strong>Cambridge</strong> <strong>University</strong><br />

has a deeply entrenched history of elitism, these<br />

campaigns are necessary to facilitate the progress<br />

the <strong>University</strong> is making towards taking a proactive<br />

stance for equality. The <strong>University</strong> is committed to<br />

making positive changes, and has made significant<br />

progress, but, just like wider society, there is still work<br />

to be done.<br />

first and foremost, we are a campaign group, so<br />

if you have any suggestions or grievances about<br />

international issues, or feel that change needs to<br />

be made, we are here to turn that into student<br />

action. Moreover, we want to make your transition<br />

to <strong>Cambridge</strong> life as enjoyable as possible, so don’t<br />

hesitate to speak to us. Don’t forget to read the<br />

iCUSU Fresher’s <strong>Guide</strong>!<br />

12 CUSU Freshers’ <strong>Guide</strong> <strong>2010</strong>


Autonomous Campaigns<br />

LesBiGayTrans Students (LBGT)<br />

The CUSU LBGT Campaign supports the needs of lesbian,<br />

bisexual, gay and transgender students. From sexual health<br />

to coming out, religious issues and other problems, the<br />

Committee are available for confidential support. Our<br />

website contains a full committee list, links to other sites<br />

of interest and more. Please do get in touch with us, even<br />

before you come up. College’s also have LBGT reps, who will<br />

organize events during Freshers’ Week and throughout the<br />

Heads of Campaign: Dan Green and Beatrice De Vela lbgt@cusu.cam.ac.uk<br />

For more information see: www.lbgt.cusu.cam.ac.uk<br />

Black Students’ Campaign<br />

The Black Students’ Campaign exists to champion the<br />

voices of all Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) students across<br />

<strong>Cambridge</strong> <strong>University</strong>. ‘Black’ is an all-embracing term<br />

used to refer to all BME students who, by virtue of being<br />

non-white are likely to have a different university experience.<br />

The elected committee works to improve access for<br />

prospective BME students, to support those currently study-<br />

Head of Campaign: Akilah Jeffers blackstudents@cusu.cam.ac.uk<br />

For more information see: www.blackstudents.cusu.cam.ac.uk<br />

Disabled Students’ Liberation Campaign<br />

Disability comes in so many different forms, from mental<br />

health conditions, autism, specific learning difficulties, chronic<br />

illnesses to mobility and sensory impairments and more. The<br />

DSLC brings together self-defining disabled students from<br />

throughout the <strong>University</strong>. Together we’re in a strong position<br />

to make life at <strong>Cambridge</strong> <strong>University</strong> an accessible and fun<br />

place for all disabled students. DSLC was set up in 2009 when<br />

a group of disabled students came together and pushed for<br />

self-defining representation within the university and CUSU.<br />

Heads of Campaign: Esther Leighton and Nicola Sleap disabled@cusu.cam.ac.uk<br />

For more information see: www.disabled.cusu.cam.ac.uk<br />

year. You can get in touch with them through our website.<br />

Also, look out for our section in the Freshers’ <strong>Guide</strong>, handed<br />

out by your college Student <strong>Union</strong> when you arrive! We<br />

hold a club night every Tuesday (‘Rendezvous’) at Vodka<br />

Revolution. The night is consistently popular and you can<br />

find more information about it on our website. We also have<br />

a termly magazine – [no definition] – which is always looking<br />

for new writers!<br />

ing here, and to equip students with the tools they need<br />

for the world of work. We are an active force in <strong>Cambridge</strong><br />

politics, organising events and speaking for or against<br />

policies at CUSU Council. There are numerous opportunities<br />

to get involved with the BSC - visit our stall at the Societies’<br />

Fair or come to our annual Freshers’ Squash held soon afterwards.<br />

It’s a great place to meet people and get involved.<br />

The campaign is very new and exciting and we’re looking<br />

forward to lots more disabled students getting involved –<br />

one of our campaigns seeks to get more disabled students<br />

positively self-defining as disabled. We organise accessible<br />

social events and any self-defining disabled student can bring<br />

up an issue for one-to-one support or for the campaign as a<br />

whole to work on. So make sure you contact us, look out for<br />

us at the CUSU Societies’ Fair, and get involved.<br />

CUSU Freshers’ <strong>Guide</strong> <strong>2010</strong> 13


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Your checklist<br />

Being on top of the basics before you arrive in <strong>Cambridge</strong> really helps<br />

during Freshers’ Week so you can enjoy yourself and get to know people!<br />

Not all of these things will apply to you; just make sure you get the really<br />

important things ready before or soon after arriving in <strong>Cambridge</strong>. And<br />

don’t worry, there are lots of shops in <strong>Cambridge</strong> where you can buy the<br />

things you’ve forgotten pretty cheaply!<br />

ID and documents<br />

✔ Birth Certificate<br />

✔ Passport<br />

✔ NHS Card, Medical details/<br />

Immunisation history<br />

✔ Paperwork relating to any<br />

financial assistance you’ve<br />

applied for<br />

✔ National Insurance Number<br />

✔ Insurance Certificate<br />

(possessions, bike, musical<br />

instrument…)<br />

✔ Passport Photos – for your<br />

CUSU membership card, society<br />

membership etc (4or so)<br />

✔ Bank account details – if you’ve<br />

already set up your bank<br />

account<br />

✔ Bank things – debit card, credit<br />

card, cheque book etc<br />

Worth considering<br />

✔ Batteries<br />

✔ Bedtime Reading/Novels/<br />

DVDs<br />

✔ Bike/Bike Lock/Helmet/Lights<br />

✔ Camera<br />

✔ TV – remember, you’ll need a<br />

license too!<br />

For your room<br />

✔ Anything that makes you feel<br />

at home – posters, ornaments<br />

etc.<br />

✔ Rugs, cushions etc.<br />

✔ Alarm Clock<br />

✔ Bed Linen (some colleges<br />

provide it)<br />

✔ Pillow/Duvet (some colleges<br />

provide them)<br />

✔ Towels<br />

✔ Iron<br />

✔ Coat Hangers<br />

✔ Desk Lamp (optional)<br />

✔ Extension Lead/Adaptor –<br />

there are NEVER enough<br />

sockets<br />

✔ Phone charger<br />

✔ Stereo/hi-fi/decks<br />

✔ Plates, bowels, cutlery,<br />

saucepans etc<br />

✔ Glasses, mugs<br />

✔ Kettle<br />

✔ Toaster<br />

✔ Corkscrew/bottle opener<br />

✔ Snack food for the first few<br />

days – or pick this up in<br />

<strong>Cambridge</strong> after you arrive<br />

Work<br />

✔ Relevant notes from your A-level<br />

(or equivalent) course<br />

✔ Reading list and anything sent<br />

by your faculty/college<br />

✔ PC or Laptop (optional)<br />

✔ Stationery - pens, paper, hole<br />

punch, etc<br />

Clearing up<br />

✔ Dish Cloth<br />

✔ Tea Towel<br />

✔ Kitchen Roll/Tissues<br />

✔ Washing Powder/Tablets<br />

✔ Washing-up Liquid<br />

Personal<br />

✔ Toiletries<br />

✔ Basic medicines (plasters, paracetamol,<br />

etc)<br />

✔ A map of <strong>Cambridge</strong> - or buy<br />

one when you arrive<br />

✔ Change for the washing machine/tumble<br />

dryer – check what<br />

your college’s arrangements are<br />

✔ This guide! And any college, JCR<br />

or MCR material you’ve been<br />

sent<br />

Worth considering<br />

✔ Most people dress casually all the time, but some formal occasions will arise when you might need smarter<br />

clothing. The first of these is likely to be your Matriculation Photo – check with your college if they have any<br />

particular requirements.<br />

✔ While it is likely you will need formal wear at some point, you can often fire items – don’t rush out and buy<br />

things you’ll never end up using!<br />

18 CUSU Freshers’ <strong>Guide</strong> <strong>2010</strong>


Understanding the <strong>Cambridge</strong> language<br />

ADC: Amateur Dramatic Club – i) the student run<br />

society, ii) the Theatre itself on Park Street<br />

ASNaC: Anglo-Saxon, Norse and Celtic<br />

Arch’n’Anth: Archaeology and Anthropology<br />

Backs: The area of <strong>Cambridge</strong> where the river goes<br />

through the colleges<br />

Bedders: A college cleaner, who usually cleans<br />

communal facilities.<br />

Boatie: An obsessive rower. These people often get up<br />

very early in the morning and even turn up to lectures<br />

in lycra.<br />

Bop: Disco.<br />

College Parents: Two students in second or third year<br />

allocated to you to help you settle in through your first<br />

few weeks at <strong>Cambridge</strong>.<br />

Compsci: Computer Sciences / a Computer Scientist.<br />

Cuppers: Inter-college sports knockout competitions.<br />

CUSU: <strong>Cambridge</strong> <strong>University</strong> Students’ <strong>Union</strong> – though<br />

you should know that by now!<br />

Degrading: This is where you repeat a year of studies,<br />

due to health, personal or academic reasons.<br />

DoS: Director of Studies - the person, usually within<br />

your college, who guides you through your degree,<br />

monitoring your progress and offering help and advice.<br />

Easter: The third term (April – June)<br />

Ents: These are student-run parties or events, organised<br />

by CUSU or your JCR, also known as ‘Bops’<br />

Fellow: A senior member of a college, who often<br />

teaches in the subject in which they specialise.<br />

Formal or Formal Hall: A relatively cheap (usually<br />

around £7) three course meal in your college hall.<br />

This is a <strong>Cambridge</strong> tradition that is really fun and<br />

well worth using! A Formal Swap is a visit to another<br />

college’s formal, usually through a college team or<br />

society.<br />

GU: Graduate <strong>Union</strong> - provides social space and<br />

events for graduate students, and some additional<br />

representation on <strong>University</strong> committees.<br />

JCR: Junior Common or Combination Room -<br />

often refers both to a college’s students’ union for<br />

undergraduates and the actual room. They represent<br />

undergraduates’ views to the official college bodies, and<br />

are the centre of college social activities.<br />

KFC: Kitchen Fixed Charge - usually added to your<br />

college bill, and pays to subsidise the cost of food in the<br />

college canteen. It works in different ways from college<br />

to college.<br />

Lent: The second term (January – March).<br />

MCR: Middle Common Room - see JCR, but for<br />

postgraduate students.<br />

Mathmo: a Mathematician.<br />

Michaelmas: The first term (September – December)<br />

Muso: a Music student.<br />

NatSci: Natural Sciences / a Natural Scientist.<br />

Plodge: The Porters’ Lodge.<br />

Porters: The Porters give help and information to<br />

visitors and students alike, and can be a constant source<br />

of friendliness. They generally know everything about<br />

everything, and will help you when you inevitably lock<br />

yourself out of your room.<br />

SCR: The fellows’ common room.<br />

PPSIS: Politics, Psychology, Sociology and International<br />

Studies<br />

Squash: The bizarre name for the events that clubs/<br />

societies run in Freshers’ Week, where you can find out<br />

more about them and sign up (they often involve free<br />

food)<br />

Stash: Clothing associated with a club or society, cool<br />

stash can be a reason in itself to join a club<br />

TCS: The <strong>Cambridge</strong> Student – your student-run<br />

newspaper<br />

Thesp: An obsessive actor. The theatre scene is pretty<br />

big in <strong>Cambridge</strong>, and there are plenty of opportunities<br />

to get involved in it at most levels.<br />

Tutor: Fellow who acts as your College contact, looking<br />

out for your wellbeing.<br />

Varsity: i) the match that most sports play against<br />

Oxford each year, with massive rivalry; ii) another<br />

student newspaper.<br />

CUSU Freshers’ <strong>Guide</strong> <strong>2010</strong> 19


Useful Contacts<br />

Here are useful links for people and organisations you may wish to contact while you<br />

are in <strong>Cambridge</strong> or before you arrive.<br />

CUSU<br />

Your Students’ <strong>Union</strong>! So drop by anytime at Old Examination Hall, New Museums Site, call us on 01223 333313<br />

or check out the website at www.cusu.cam.ac.uk.<br />

Student Advice Service<br />

For information, advice & representation contact Lisa Dery our full-time Student Advisor at advice@cusu.cam.ac.uk<br />

or the following Sabbatical Officers:<br />

Morgan Wild (Student Support Officer) – studentsupport@cusu.cam.ac.uk<br />

Maria Helmling (Education Officer) – education@cusu.cam.ac.uk<br />

Sarah Peters-Harrison (Women’s Officer) – womens@cusu.cam.ac.uk<br />

Or, call the Student Support Phone - 07999 85 99 40 (7 days a week 9am-7pm)<br />

<strong>University</strong><br />

<strong>University</strong> Counselling Service - www.counselling.cam.ac.uk - 01223 332865 - reception@counselling.cam.ac.uk<br />

<strong>University</strong> Childcare Office - www.cam.ac.uk/cambuniv/childcare/childguide - 01223 332249 - childcare@admin.cam.ac.uk<br />

Disability Resource Centre - www.cam.ac.uk/cambuniv/disability 01223 332301 - ucam-disability@lists.cam.ac.uk<br />

International Office – 01223 764680 - international@admin.cam.ac.uk<br />

Points Based Immigration Office - 01223 337984 - studentvisas@admin.cam.ac.uk<br />

<strong>University</strong> Accommodation Service (affordable accommodation in <strong>Cambridge</strong>) - www.accommodation.cam.ac.uk -<br />

01223 338099 - accommodation.service@admin.cam.ac.uk<br />

Board of Graduate Studies - www.admin.cam.ac.uk/offices/gradstud/ - 01223 760606 - graduate.students@admin.cam.ac.uk<br />

Graduate <strong>Union</strong> - www.gradunion.cam.ac.uk - 01223 333312 - enquiries@gradunion.cam.ac.uk<br />

Medical<br />

Student Health Website - www.camstudenthealth.co.uk<br />

NHS Direct - 0845 46 47<br />

Urgent Care <strong>Cambridge</strong>shire - 03301 239131<br />

Addenbrooke’s Hospital - 01223 245 151<br />

Legal<br />

Citizen’s Advice Bureau - www.cambridgecab.org.uk - 0844 848 7979<br />

Sexual Health<br />

The Laurels (Confidential sexual health check-ups) - 08456 505 152<br />

www.sexualhealthcambs.nhs.uk<br />

www.goodsexualhealth.co.uk<br />

www.contraceptivechoices.co.uk<br />

Listening and Support<br />

Linkline - Linkline is a listening support and information service, run by students for students, every night of <strong>Cambridge</strong><br />

<strong>University</strong> full term. You can call on 01223 744 444 or 01223 367 575 between 7am and 7pm. www.linkline.org.uk<br />

Samaritans - Confidential listening service 24/7. 01223 364454 (local) or 08457 909090 (national)<br />

20 CUSU Freshers’ <strong>Guide</strong> <strong>2010</strong>


Support and Advice in <strong>Cambridge</strong><br />

There are many ways in which students can get support<br />

within their College, the <strong>University</strong>, CUSU, the GU as well as<br />

within the wider community in <strong>Cambridge</strong>. Tutors, Directors<br />

of Studies, Supervisors, Nurses, Chaplains, Welfare Officers and<br />

the CUSU-GU Student Advice Service all have a role to play in<br />

helping you make the most of your time living and studying<br />

in <strong>Cambridge</strong>. Here we look at the different roles and the<br />

ways in which they can support you.<br />

Tutor<br />

You will be assigned a tutor (College Tutor for<br />

undergraduates and Graduate Tutor for post-graduates)<br />

who will be responsible for providing you with nonacademic<br />

pastoral support (e.g. finance, accommodation,<br />

family or medical issues). The tutorial system differs from<br />

college to college but wherever you are, if you feel your<br />

tutor is not right for you, you can approach any other tutor<br />

for support. Your Senior Tutor is in charge of the academic<br />

and pastoral welfare in the College, so you can go directly<br />

to him or her as well.<br />

Director of Studies<br />

As an undergraduate you will be assigned a Director of<br />

Studies (DoS) for your subject in your College. Your DoS<br />

is responsible for your academic support and you should<br />

be able to discuss your progress with them as well as any<br />

challenges you may be having in your studies.<br />

Research Supervisor<br />

As a research graduate student (e.g. Masters or PhD) you<br />

will work closely with your research supervisor and can<br />

discuss any challenges or concerns you have with them.<br />

College Nurse<br />

Most Colleges have a nurse or access to a nurse who will<br />

operate surgery hours in college during full term. You may<br />

wish to see the College Nurse to inform him/her of any<br />

pre-existing conditions, such as asthma or depression,<br />

The Student Advice Service<br />

offers free, confidential and<br />

independent support to all<br />

students.<br />

before you leave or on arrival. And of course, you can see<br />

the nurse for anything relating to your health or if you are<br />

having difficulty settling in to life in <strong>Cambridge</strong>.<br />

College Chaplain<br />

Every College has a Chaplain or access to a Chaplain who<br />

can provide pastoral and spiritual support for students<br />

of all faiths and none. Whether you would like to find a<br />

place of worship or discuss how you are adapting to life in<br />

<strong>Cambridge</strong>, the Chaplain will be able to listen to you and<br />

provide guidance.<br />

Welfare Officer<br />

Each college JCR, MCR or College Students’ <strong>Union</strong> will have<br />

a Welfare Officer on their committee. You can contact your<br />

College Welfare Officer for information and support or<br />

22 CUSU Freshers’ <strong>Guide</strong> <strong>2010</strong>


Support and Advice in <strong>Cambridge</strong><br />

to simply talk something through. They can also point<br />

you in the right direction if you are unsure of whom<br />

to go to in college for any particular issue. They will<br />

usually organise events throughout the year to which all<br />

students are welcome. Your college should also have a<br />

Women’s Officer who can support women students.<br />

Student Advice Service<br />

The Student Advice Service offers free, confidential and<br />

independent support to all students. If you feel you have<br />

been discriminated against, treated unfairly or would like<br />

to discuss something that is bothering you, contact us by<br />

phone or by email, whether it’s the first time you have a<br />

question or as a last resort. We can discuss your concerns<br />

with you, explore what options are available to you and<br />

represent you at a college level if necessary.<br />

You can come to the service with any issues or problems<br />

that you might experience as a student - from questions<br />

or concerns about your education or <strong>University</strong><br />

procedures to a health enquiry or a mental health issue.<br />

We employ a full time, professional Student Advisor and<br />

CUSU’s three trained student support officers will also be<br />

able to provide support and representation.<br />

<strong>University</strong> Counseling Service<br />

The <strong>University</strong> Counselling Service provides free,<br />

confidential and professional counselling to all students.<br />

The Counsellors are friendly and non-judgemental. You<br />

can make an appointment on the website. Counselling<br />

sessions take place in a very comfortable and private<br />

setting and usually last around 50 minutes. The<br />

Counselling Service also runs a range of group sessions<br />

including Cognitive Behavioural Therapy Groups, a<br />

Can’t Work group, a Disordered Eating group, an Exam<br />

Preparation group and a Writing up your PhD group.<br />

http://www.counselling.cam.ac.uk/<br />

Coming to <strong>Cambridge</strong> with children?<br />

There is a lot of information, advice and support on childcare, finance and socializing available before<br />

you come to <strong>Cambridge</strong> and once you have arrived. You can always contact the Student Advice<br />

Service for more information. Here are a few useful contacts:<br />

<strong>University</strong> Childcare Office<br />

The <strong>University</strong> Childcare Office provides information and advice to all student parents, organises<br />

events, runs a childcare bursary scheme and publishes a weekly email bulletin. To contact an Adviser<br />

and join the mailing list email childcare@admin.cam.ac.uk.<br />

The <strong>Cambridge</strong> <strong>Guide</strong> for Student Parents<br />

Full of useful information on life in <strong>Cambridge</strong> as a parent, information on finance, health care,<br />

childcare and activities in <strong>Cambridge</strong> for all students who have children. www.cam.ac.uk/<br />

studentparentguide<br />

Social Events<br />

The Family Society is student-run group that organises events and, providing opportunities and<br />

networks for families at <strong>Cambridge</strong> <strong>University</strong> to get to know each other. . Have a look at their<br />

website www.societies.cam.ac.uk/family/ for more information. The Graduate <strong>Union</strong> run a Parent and<br />

Toddler Group every Friday from 10.30am – 12.30pm every Friday all year around at the <strong>University</strong><br />

Centre, Mill Lane.<br />

CUSU Freshers’ <strong>Guide</strong> <strong>2010</strong> 23


Health<br />

Your physical and mental health will have an impact on<br />

your ability to study and settle in to life in <strong>Cambridge</strong>.<br />

Most students will experience personal challenges at<br />

some point during their time in <strong>Cambridge</strong>. Developing<br />

a healthy lifestyle and a support network will help you<br />

make the most of the academic and social aspects of your<br />

life at the <strong>University</strong>. Consider how much sleep you are<br />

getting and whether or not you are eating a balanced<br />

diet. Think about balance between your study and social<br />

life.<br />

It is important that you look after your health and make<br />

use of the services available to you when/if needed such<br />

as the <strong>University</strong> Counselling Service, the College Nurse,<br />

your GP (medical doctor) etc. If you are unsure of who<br />

to contact, get in touch with the Student Advice Service.<br />

Here, we highlight some of the more common health<br />

issues that affect students.<br />

Sexual Health<br />

Information on sexual health is useful whether you are<br />

having sex or not. Good sexual health is about:<br />

• Knowing how to protect yourself from Sexually<br />

Transmitted Infections (STIs),<br />

• Being aware of the different choices of contraception<br />

available to you<br />

• Knowing that you have the right to say ‘yes’ to the sex<br />

you want, ‘no’ to the sex you don’t want and the right<br />

to change your mind<br />

• Feeling comfortable about your sexual orientation,<br />

whether heterosexual, gay, lesbian, bisexual or queer<br />

You can obtain free and confidential information and<br />

advice about sexual health, STIs, being a student parent,<br />

pregnancy, contraception, emergency contraception<br />

and abortion through your College nurse, your GP<br />

(medical doctor), a sexual health clinic, and from the<br />

CUSU and GU Student Advice Service. Some students<br />

may prefer to obtain information on the web and CUSU’s<br />

website is filled with information, tips and links at www.<br />

goodsexualhealth.co.uk.<br />

Mental Health<br />

Mental health issues can affect anyone; one in four<br />

students will experience a mental health issue whilst<br />

at <strong>University</strong>. This can include anxiety, panic attacks,<br />

depression, obsession and phobias, as well as alcohol and<br />

drug addiction.<br />

A wide range of support is available for students<br />

experiencing mental health issues. Your college can be<br />

very supportive through your college nurse or tutor. Free<br />

counselling is available from the <strong>University</strong> Counselling<br />

Service and their Mental Health Advisor. The Student<br />

Advice Service can also provide information and support.<br />

The <strong>University</strong> seeks to be as inclusive an environment as<br />

possible and if you require special access requirements<br />

as a result of your mental health condition, you can seek<br />

advice from either your college or the Disability Resource<br />

Centre on how this can be accommodated.<br />

Your physical and mental<br />

health will have an impact<br />

on your ability to study and<br />

settle in to life in <strong>Cambridge</strong>.<br />

Eating Disorders<br />

Eating disorders affect 1 in 20 people at some point<br />

in their lives, the majority between the ages of 16 and<br />

25. An eating disorder is not always recognisable from<br />

appearance and is not a ‘lifestyle choice’, a form of ‘self<br />

indulgence’ or necessarily prompted by the desire to be<br />

thin.<br />

If you have an eating disorder or think you may, are<br />

worried about relapse or are concerned about a friend,<br />

there is lots of support and advice available to you in<br />

College, the <strong>University</strong> and from the NHS in <strong>Cambridge</strong>.<br />

Letting your College Nurse know that you have an eating<br />

disorder will mean that he/she will be able to provide<br />

you with support. The <strong>University</strong> Counselling Service<br />

can also offer you support through individual or group<br />

counselling depending on your circumstances and<br />

preferences. You can also contact the Student Advice<br />

Service for information and advice.<br />

24 CUSU Freshers’ <strong>Guide</strong> <strong>2010</strong>


Student safety<br />

<strong>Cambridge</strong> is a great place in which to study and live but<br />

like most cities, it is not immune to crime. Each year in the<br />

UK, 1/3 of <strong>University</strong> students become victims of crime<br />

with theft, criminal damage and burglary accounting for<br />

the majority of cases. While it is never your fault if you are a<br />

victim of crime, there are a few things you can do to feel<br />

confident going out in <strong>Cambridge</strong> and to keep yourself<br />

and your personal belongings safe.<br />

Insuring your stuff<br />

You might not think you own very much but<br />

research shows that the average student owns<br />

£6000 worth of belongings such as a laptop, iPod,<br />

television, mobile phone, clothes etc. We strongly<br />

recommend that you take out personal insurance<br />

to cover you against theft, loss or damage to your<br />

personal belongings. Although there are many<br />

insurance companies in the UK, the National<br />

<strong>Union</strong> of Students recommends Endsleigh<br />

Insurance (www.endsleigh.co.uk).<br />

On your bike<br />

As a student in <strong>Cambridge</strong>, it is likely that you<br />

will eventually own a bike. Consider how you will<br />

protect your bike from theft and how you will<br />

keep yourself safe from injury when cycling. Four<br />

basic tips for cycling safely:<br />

• Lock your bike with a good quality bike lock<br />

• Make sure your bike has goods lights and<br />

reflectors<br />

• Protect your head (and your life!) by wearing a<br />

good quality helmet.<br />

• Read more about cycling safety at:<br />

www.cusu.cam.ac.uk/welfare/cyclesafety<br />

Going Out<br />

Social activities are part of the <strong>Cambridge</strong><br />

experience and you will no doubt have a few<br />

late nights when you will need to find a safe<br />

way home. Before you come to <strong>Cambridge</strong>, it’s<br />

well worth taking some time to think about your<br />

personal safety. Four basic tips for keeping safe<br />

when out and about:<br />

• Walk in groups at night or in busy, well-lit area<br />

• Let someone know where you are going<br />

• Pre-plan safe routes home before you go out<br />

• Carry a personal attack alarm<br />

• Read more about personal safety at:<br />

www.cusu.cam.ac.uk/welfare/safety/goingout<br />

CUSU Freshers’ <strong>Guide</strong> <strong>2010</strong> 25


Students with disabilities<br />

What is a Disabled Student?<br />

The symbol of disability depicts a wheelchair user, but<br />

disability comes in many other forms. If you experience<br />

mental health conditions, specific learning difficulties,<br />

autism, chronic health conditions or mobility or sensory<br />

impairments, then you may be disabled and have access<br />

requirements that aren’t routinely met. The Disability<br />

Resource Centre (see below) can help you to explore the<br />

possibility of undiagnosed impairment and refer you for<br />

funding if you need an assessment.<br />

As a disabled person, you will have impairment related<br />

access requirements that often aren’t routinely met. The<br />

<strong>University</strong> and colleges have a legal obligation to make<br />

reasonable adjustments, and should meet all of your access<br />

requirements, whatever they are, so that you have full<br />

access to your education.<br />

Disclosure and Access<br />

If you are a disabled student, it is important that you<br />

disclose this, preferably before you arrive, so that access<br />

arrangements can be made and any support you require<br />

provided. Make sure you’re in touch with the Disability<br />

Resource Centre, as they can support you in ensuring that<br />

your course is fully accessible.<br />

<strong>Cambridge</strong> is an increasingly inclusive environment for<br />

disabled students. However, there is still the possibility<br />

that you will encounter a situation where your access<br />

requirements are not met or your rights as a disabled<br />

student are not recognised. It is important to remember<br />

that you have rights as a disabled student, including to<br />

reasonable adjustments. If you have disclosed that you<br />

are disabled to both your college and faculty and you<br />

encounter these difficulties, then get in touch with the<br />

Disability Resource Centre or the Student Advice Service:<br />

both organisations can advocate with you. You may also<br />

want to get in touch with the Disabled Students’ Liberation<br />

Campaign, which exists for disabled people to organise<br />

themselves to campaign for their rights, as well as being<br />

a space for accessible socialising, advice, support and an<br />

opportunity to meet other disabled people.<br />

If you’re thinking of arranging or attending something<br />

in a <strong>University</strong> building, you might want to check out<br />

the <strong>Cambridge</strong> Access <strong>Guide</strong> beforehand, for access<br />

information about college, faculty and other <strong>University</strong><br />

buildings, and for contacts if you need to call ahead http://<br />

www.admin.cam.ac.uk/univ/disability/guide/about.html<br />

Disabled Students’ Allowance<br />

The Disabled Students’ Allowance (DSA) exists to meet<br />

the cost of your access requirements. These may include<br />

study skills training for people with specific learning<br />

difficulties, peer mentoring for people with mental health<br />

impairments, note taking and equipment for people with<br />

mobility, sensory or fatigue impairments, and so on.<br />

A diagnosis is required before a student can claim their<br />

allowance: the Disability Resource Centre can help arrange<br />

this. Any personal information required for your DSA<br />

application will be confidential. It is available to all full-time<br />

and part-time undergraduate and postgraduate students<br />

from the UK. If you are an international student, the DRC<br />

and DSLC can advise you about the funding available to<br />

you.<br />

If you are a disabled student, it is<br />

important that you disclose this,<br />

preferably before you arrive, so<br />

that access arrangements can be<br />

made and any support you require<br />

provided.<br />

The Disability Resource Centre<br />

http://www.admin.cam.ac.uk/univ/disability/<br />

The Disability Resource Centre (DRC) is the <strong>University</strong><br />

of <strong>Cambridge</strong>’s disability service, providing advice,<br />

information and support to all disabled students. The DRC<br />

supports individuals with any impairment experiencing<br />

disability, whether temporary or permanent, including<br />

those with specific learning difficulties, mobility<br />

impairments, sensory impairments, fatigue, mental health<br />

impairments including eating disorders, chronic illnesses,<br />

autism and injury. The DRC can provide confidential<br />

information and support, study skills tuition and peer<br />

mentoring, assessment for a range of impairments<br />

including specific learning difficulties, the loan of specialist<br />

equipment and assistance with funding applications.<br />

The DRC can also help to ensure that all your access<br />

requirements are being met.<br />

26 CUSU Freshers’ <strong>Guide</strong> <strong>2010</strong>


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<strong>Cambridge</strong> Nightlife<br />

Whatever you want, we’ve got it!<br />

Like all other universities <strong>Cambridge</strong> isn’t just<br />

about studying hard. <strong>Cambridge</strong> Students<br />

are blessed with a packed and varied social<br />

calendar. CUSU Ents (www.cusuents.com) is the<br />

official entertainment provider, currently ruining<br />

three weekly nights (see opposite for details)<br />

we also provide support for college based<br />

entertainments and are here to help students<br />

who want to get more involved with the scene.<br />

We pride ourselves on quality entertainments<br />

including world famous DJ’s, fun celebrity<br />

appearances and great giveaways, and our<br />

regular top class DJ’s and drinks deals are all<br />

provided in a safe and welcoming environment.<br />

As well as the great nights and events CUSU is<br />

involved with, there is a plethora of social events<br />

around the town. Each of the 31 colleges has<br />

a vibrant scene, with their own bar for quieter<br />

nights-in as well as many smaller events put on<br />

by the college itself, including party nights and<br />

live music. The bars are a great place to unwind,<br />

watch some sport or just catch up with your<br />

mates after a hard day. A staple of <strong>Cambridge</strong><br />

social life are the college Formal Halls, which<br />

as the name suggests is a formal dinner in your<br />

College hall. They all vary in price and dress code<br />

but are generally a good three-course-meal for<br />

less than £10 and the perfect chance to relax<br />

with your friends before heading into town.<br />

<strong>Cambridge</strong> is full of varied entertainment<br />

ranging from traditional student club-nights at<br />

venues across town to an abundance of theatre<br />

groups and performances of different styles and<br />

levels. <strong>Cambridge</strong> is also home to lots of live<br />

music from talented acoustic sessions at bars such<br />

as CB2 through to countless bands playing across<br />

the town from mainstream touring bands to local<br />

favourites at the Portland Arms, Haymakers and<br />

Corner House.<br />

With hundreds of <strong>University</strong> societies in<br />

<strong>Cambridge</strong>, it’s easy to meet like minded people<br />

so that whatever you’re into there will be<br />

something to do almost every night of the week!<br />

Ruth Meyer<br />

Coming from Newcastle<br />

I was really worried there<br />

would be no nightlife and<br />

everyone would be too<br />

busy working. I’ve found the<br />

nightlife here a big change,<br />

however, you do get to<br />

be very fond of the cheesy<br />

nights out <strong>Cambridge</strong> specialises in. You end up going out<br />

in big groups so it’s a good laugh.<br />

28 CUSU Freshers’ <strong>Guide</strong> <strong>2010</strong>


<strong>Cambridge</strong> Nightlife<br />

CUSU Ents is the entertainment side of the student<br />

union and we work with clubs across town to put on<br />

student friendly nights. We currently have a range<br />

of varied nights including <strong>Cambridge</strong>’s weekly LBGT<br />

night where we work closely with the LBGT society<br />

to provide a welcoming fun environment. Working<br />

with the Graduate <strong>Union</strong> we run a great night at La<br />

Raza (Rose Crescent, <strong>Cambridge</strong>, CB2 3LL) giving<br />

the perfect opportunity for those who aren’t keen<br />

on big clubs and cheesy music to join us and relax<br />

in a luxurious bar specialising in fantastic cocktails.<br />

Our main night is currently Thursday nights and we<br />

are working on an exciting new look for the night so<br />

watch this space :-)<br />

We always strive to bring the biggest names<br />

possible at student friendly prices, over the past<br />

2 years we have brought Kissy Sell Out, Jaguar<br />

Skills, Utah Saints, Scratch Perverts, Dave Pearce,<br />

Gatecrasher, Kele from Bloc Party and many more to<br />

help you party the night away in <strong>Cambridge</strong>.<br />

We aren’t just about club nights though! CUSU<br />

Ents is here to provide support and advice for<br />

all <strong>Cambridge</strong> Students who are keen to get<br />

involved or put on an event, be it through societies<br />

or JCR/ MCR’s we can often help you source<br />

equipment/ entertainment and help you with<br />

event organisation. CUSU Ents works with the JCR<br />

Ents officers to create an Ents network within the<br />

university. We can also help you get involved with<br />

live music, theatre or comedy in the city.<br />

We are always looking for more students to get<br />

involved at all levels from promoting nights in your<br />

college and selling tickets(for which you earn a<br />

commission!), helping to run the events or being<br />

the star and DJ’ing at one of our nights! Just contact<br />

ents-manager@cusu.cam.ac.uk for more information.<br />

Keep up to date with all the nights that we run and<br />

are planning on launching by joining CUSU Ents on<br />

facebook.


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Zumba, Pilates, 4 types of Yoga, Core,<br />

Box-Fit, Body conditioning, Step, etc.<br />

Thompson’s Lane, off Bridge Street at Quayside<br />

01223 30 50 60 / www.theglassworksgym.co.uk


Sports<br />

<strong>University</strong> life brings with it a huge opportunity for sports.<br />

Whether you want to continue playing a sport, perhaps at<br />

a more competitive level, find new enthusiasm for a game<br />

you’ve not played for years, or give something new a go,<br />

now is the best time for it.<br />

It’s not just a great way to keep fit, but offers a way to<br />

survive some of the intense study throughout the year.<br />

Unlike other Universities, the college system means that<br />

there are many smaller clubs that are more relaxed and<br />

are a great chance to try sports you haven’t played before.<br />

The inter-college competitive leagues are a chance<br />

to show your college pride and the rivalries can often<br />

get quite serious! Also, most Colleges offer a gym that<br />

is well-equipped and cheap to join and will be really<br />

convenient too. Look out for more information from your<br />

college in Freshers’ Week.<br />

Almost every sport is catered for in <strong>Cambridge</strong>. There<br />

are the obvious high profile sports such as rugby union<br />

and league, football, rowing and hockey, but also other<br />

team and individual activities on an almost daily basis. If<br />

you want to try Ultimate Frisbee, lacrosse, ice hockey or<br />

even skydiving, there’s almost always a <strong>University</strong> team or<br />

club. The top <strong>University</strong> teams compete against Universities<br />

across the country in the British Universities & College’s<br />

Sport (BUCS) leagues, or other local and even national club<br />

sides. More information on the <strong>University</strong> level Sports Clubs<br />

can be found at http://www.sport.cam.ac.uk/<br />

The annual highlight of most sports teams will be<br />

the Varsity Match against Oxford, providing exhilarating<br />

encounters for competitors, and hugely enjoyable social<br />

Campaign for a <strong>University</strong> sports centre<br />

events for everyone who chooses to watch. Nearly all<br />

sports (triathlon, cross country and darts to name a few)<br />

contend a fixture against the oldest rival and, while the<br />

attention may be slightly diminished from rugby and<br />

rowing, they’re still just as enjoyable.<br />

Most sports clubs hold events at the start of the year<br />

where you can learn more about them if you’re a first-timer,<br />

and get information on training times and competitions.<br />

A high profile activity in <strong>2010</strong>/11 will be the CUSU campaign for a university sports centre. <strong>Cambridge</strong><br />

has over 50 <strong>University</strong> Sports Clubs and thousands of students are involved in sport for recreation and<br />

intercollegiate competition. Sadly, there are few central facilities for most sports in <strong>Cambridge</strong> and College<br />

provision can vary greatly. Students in <strong>Cambridge</strong> have been calling for a university sports centre for<br />

decades. We believe that if <strong>Cambridge</strong> wants to continue to attract the best students, it must tackle the<br />

issue and provide this facility for students.<br />

After several years of campaigning CUSU has recently succeeded in getting the <strong>University</strong> to agree<br />

to include the project in its building plans. Proposals for building the first phase of the centre in West<br />

<strong>Cambridge</strong> are going to be considered this year. CUSU will be working with students and sports clubs to<br />

lobby the university through petitions, public events and other activities to make sure that the <strong>University</strong><br />

makes the right decision and invests in sport for students.<br />

CUSU Freshers’ <strong>Guide</strong> <strong>2010</strong> 31


Societies in <strong>Cambridge</strong><br />

It’s an understatement to say a lot goes on in <strong>Cambridge</strong>.<br />

If you have an interest, there will be a club or society that<br />

shares it; so get involved as much (or as little) as you want.<br />

The <strong>Cambridge</strong> experience isn’t just about essays and<br />

supervisions, but also the people and opportunities while<br />

you’re here. The easiest to get involved with societies is at<br />

the CUSU Societies’ Fair at the Kelsey Kerridge Sports<br />

Centre on 5th and 6th October. It’s well worth a visit, so<br />

leave plenty of time to see everything. Most societies also<br />

have a ‘squash’ at the beginning of the year, a gathering<br />

where they tell you about what they do and you sign up to<br />

their email list so you stay informed.<br />

So what can you ‘get involved’ with? We could fill pages<br />

and pages with information about all the societies in<br />

<strong>Cambridge</strong>, so we’ve decided just to mention a few<br />

examples of what you can do. Also, don’t forget there will<br />

also be societies and groups to get involved with in your<br />

college.<br />

Performing Arts<br />

There is a huge drama, comedy and music scene in<br />

<strong>Cambridge</strong>. Sign up to the ADC (<strong>Cambridge</strong> <strong>University</strong><br />

Amateur Dramatics Club) actors’, techies’ or production<br />

list and see how many auditions and plays you can get<br />

involved with each week. The standard of theatre in<br />

<strong>Cambridge</strong> is generally high, but there are less serious<br />

endeavours you can get involved with, and have a laugh<br />

rather than learn about acting. You may have heard of the<br />

Footlights, a group of comedians who have produced<br />

names such as John Cleese, Alan Bennett and Sacha Baron<br />

Cohen.<br />

Media<br />

<strong>Cambridge</strong> is one of the UK’s best universities for student<br />

media. The two student newspapers – Varsity and The<br />

<strong>Cambridge</strong> Student – are published every week and<br />

always on the look-out for more writers and editors. This<br />

is the place that Jeremy Paxman, amongst others, started<br />

his career. Even if you have no desire to be a journalist, it’s<br />

a great way to meet people and get the inside track on<br />

how newspapers are put together. As if that isn’t enough<br />

we also have CUR 1350, the <strong>Cambridge</strong> <strong>University</strong> Radio<br />

station, winner of numerous national awards and a great<br />

experience if you’re interested in radio and broadcasting<br />

generally.<br />

Charities<br />

If you feel like something a little more light-hearted, or a<br />

little more charitable, there’s a huge range of charitable<br />

and community groups in the <strong>University</strong>. RAG (Raise And<br />

Give) is one of the largest charitable organisations in the<br />

<strong>University</strong> and members have recently blagged their way<br />

to Hawaii, organised blind dates across the university and<br />

walked over burning coals.<br />

Politics<br />

Like many other universities, the main political parties all<br />

have active societies within both the <strong>University</strong> and the<br />

City, so you can get involved with local council and student<br />

issues. But, if you want to get involved in campaigning to<br />

improve the student experience – CUSU is the place for<br />

you. We can also offer support and guidance if you want to<br />

start a campaign on something outside <strong>Cambridge</strong> that we<br />

might not be able to campaign on directly.<br />

Other clubs<br />

Then there’s the other 600 or so societies in <strong>Cambridge</strong> that<br />

cover every other possible interest – from the Acrobatic<br />

Martial Arts Society to the Zero-Carbon Society. Also, there’s<br />

the <strong>Cambridge</strong> <strong>Union</strong> Society, one of the oldest institutions<br />

in <strong>Cambridge</strong>, a debating society and with one of the most<br />

reasonably priced bars in <strong>Cambridge</strong>. Find them at www.<br />

cus.org.<br />

For a full list of the Societies in <strong>Cambridge</strong> go to<br />

www.cusu.cam.ac.uk/societies/directory/<br />

32 CUSU Freshers’ <strong>Guide</strong> <strong>2010</strong>


Societies<br />

Emilia Melville – The Café Project<br />

The Cafe Project is a volunteer-run community cafe, open<br />

in the evenings and serving hot drinks and snacks. It’s open<br />

to all, and provides a bridge between ‘town and gown’ and<br />

between students of all colleges. It’s a place where the<br />

diverse cultures present in <strong>Cambridge</strong> can rub shoulders<br />

and get to know each other better.<br />

The idea of the Cafe was inspired by a small volunteer-run<br />

cafe in Edinburgh called Harlequin, which a friend of mine<br />

was involved with. I went to visit during my first year in<br />

<strong>Cambridge</strong>, and felt that it was something really lacking<br />

here. The Cafe is now open most evenings, serving hot<br />

drinks, cakes and biscuits. It is also available to be booked<br />

by groups for discussions, meetings, film screenings, art<br />

exhibitions, and more. The Cafe is run non-heirarchically,<br />

with all decisions being made at weekly general meetings.<br />

Anyone who wants to can get involved - whether<br />

volunteering for a shift or two, organising events, or doing<br />

the accounts – we always need new people and ideas!<br />

CUSU Freshers’ <strong>Guide</strong> <strong>2010</strong> 33


<strong>Cambridge</strong> Life: Transport & Getting around<br />

Even if you’re at a more distant college (e.g. Homerton or<br />

Girton) you can be in the town centre in twenty minutes on a<br />

bike. One of the first things you’ll notice is just how many<br />

people cycle. As it’s so flat, <strong>Cambridge</strong> is an ideal place to<br />

cycle, and is designed for those who do.<br />

Cycling<br />

If you plan to cycle, make sure you get a good bike lock,<br />

or you may find yourself without a bike – especially if it’s a<br />

newer model. The other essential equipment is a helmet<br />

and lights. In an accident a helmet could save your life, and<br />

rear and front lights are a legal requirement (and police<br />

fines are increasingly common, especially in Freshers’ Week).<br />

There are lots of second hand bike shops dotted around, so<br />

you can pick up a cheap bike when you arrive. CUSU will be<br />

putting on cycle-safety classes in Michaelmas term, so check<br />

online for more information.<br />

Buses<br />

<strong>Cambridge</strong>’s bus system is fairly easy to understand. The<br />

important thing to remember (especially for Fitzwilliam,<br />

Churchill, Murray Edwards and Homerton students) is that<br />

the Citi4/Uni4 buses cost just 50p when you show your<br />

university card, and go from the hill colleges through the city<br />

centre to Homerton College and Addenbrookes Hospital.<br />

Cars<br />

The <strong>University</strong> doesn’t allow you to keep a car within ten<br />

miles of the city centre, without special permission from your<br />

college and the motor proctor. Many colleges allow you to<br />

apply for a parking permit as parking in <strong>Cambridge</strong> is difficult.<br />

Driving is generally awkward, with many pedestrianised<br />

roads and an infamous one-way system, so bringing a car is<br />

not recommended. <strong>Cambridge</strong> is an easy city to navigate.<br />

You can walk from lecture rooms, to colleges and town easily<br />

and quickly.<br />

Charlotte Roden, Jesus<br />

My favourite place to eat is Cafe<br />

Indigo. It’s a tiny little cafe just by<br />

King’s, which sells really cheap,<br />

yummy bagels. I love the studenty<br />

feel the cafe has, because there are<br />

about five tables and the chairs are<br />

all mismatched.<br />

If you have a free few hours, what would you do with<br />

it to relax? I am a complete shopaholic and <strong>Cambridge</strong><br />

has an amazing shopping centre, so I spend far too<br />

long wandering round the shops with my friends and<br />

drinking coffee. On the rare occasions I’m shopped out,<br />

BBC iPlayer is my best friend!<br />

34 CUSU Freshers’ <strong>Guide</strong> <strong>2010</strong>


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