Find your Community

You will have so many opportunities to immerse yourself in different cultures and groups whilst at Bristol. After all, you’re joining a community of nearly 25,000 students, so do give yourself time to explore what makes you feel happy and settled and give things a go!

Student experience

Andre joined us from Indonesia in 2018 to study a MSc in Education (Learning, Technology & Society). Here he shares his experience as an international student and his thoughts about building your community:

Photo of Andre

“Many international students from different parts of the world come and study in Bristol, so we can share our knowledge and experiences as well as learning new cultures from one another. The University has a network of services to ensure every student has access to both academic and personal support throughout the course. There are also hundreds of student clubs and societies which you can join based on your talent and interests.”

Things to do

You should have received a welcome email by now from the International Office. This contained lots of useful information about what to do before you arrive, and then everything from travelling to quarantine to welcome events.

Here are a few actions for you to take now if you haven’t already:

Download The University of Bristol Welcome app in the Google Play Store or the App Store – there are lots of useful resources and information on here.

Check out the new international students’ webpages to learn more about what you’ll need to do before and after arriving at Bristol.

International sponsored students, remember that you need to provide the university with a sponsorship letter by 6 September.

Save the date: 7 October – it’s the SU’s virtual Official Welcome Fair 2020. This is your opportunity to sign up to different clubs, societies and volunteering projects. You’ll be able to chat to stall holders live online using the interactive chat, with video, audio and text options

Take a look at the Global Lounge’s Language Café video. The Global Lounge is a place where both UK and international students can connect and socialise. They will be running regular virtual events throughout the academic year.

Join the Official Bristol Welcome 2020 Facebook group and start to meet fellow new students!

Safe travels

We wish you a safe journey to the UK and Bristol. We’re really looking forward to welcoming you to our city and community and hope you’re just as excited as we are!

Building strong communities

Our work to improve the sense of community for our students here at Bristol has started, and initiatives like the Bristol SU Living Room are helping students connect with one another. However, our students have told us that there is still more to be done.  

Over the next two years, we plan to build on our strong platform of student-centred services by aligning many of the routes to support together under one roof. Given the centrality of Senate House, and the ongoing refurbishments that have already seen the building transformed into an easily accessible and all-inclusive hub for student activity, the plan is to bring even more services into the building. 

Already the home of the Study Centre, the largest Bristol SU Living Room, the PGR hub (for postgraduate research students) and a student café, Senate House is steadily undergoing further changes as it becomes the centre of Campus Heart.    

As well as revamping the ground floor to include a one-stop information point for all students, we hope this will become a fully integrated space that offers students access to all they need; from help and advice about fees and funding to a suite of wellbeing services. There will also be additional SU space for students to use for work or relaxation. 

Our Student Wellbeing Service and Residential Life teams are already expanding, with positive results that have seen a reduction in waiting times for counselling support and a more seamless approach to early interventions, in addition to professional support available round the clock, every day of the year.  We’re building on this success to ensure that our students can continue to access the high quality support they need. This includes working in partnership with Bristol Students’ Union, Sports Exercise and Health and academic colleagues to provide a range of activities to help build strong communities across our university.  

Find out more as we chat to Ros Elliott, Head of Student Residential Life.

Further information about what we’re doing to transform our campus including all the latest developments at Senate House, can be seen on our latest film (January 2020).  

This case study is part of a series of stories sharing findings and student views from our Mental Health and Wellbeing Surveys 2018 and 2019. It’s a chance for us to share what we have done in response to what students have told us and to share what we’re planning to do. See our webpage for further information

Congratulations to our winners!

We had a brilliant response to the Alumni Awards Gala Dinner competition and really enjoyed reading each and every one of your entries. 

Well done to Leah, Monica and Rory, who won their place at the table to see Sir David Attenborough receive the Lifetime Achievement Award at the black-tie event last Tuesday. The winning entries are detailed below.

David Attenborough looks at medicinal plants used by capuchin monkeys. Photo Stephen Dunleavy, copyright Humble Bee Films

Leah summed up what it means to her to be a Bristol student with: Community, Belonging, and AdventureExplaining that “Bristol means belonging to a community of similar thinkers, learners, and adventurers, in both the academic and social sphere. It means adventuring socially, physically, and mentally, and belonging to more than just myself. Bristol means somewhere I can be myself, in earnest, and explore what being myself really means.”

Global, Daring, and Inclusive were the three words Monica chose to describe being a Bristol student, saying that “With such an international community, four years in Bristol has allowed me to build lifelong friendships spanning the whole world. Bristol students dare to challenge the status quo, think outside the box, and start conversations that stir real change. There is truly something for everyone in this beautiful, buzzing city!”

Rory chose Fostering, Uplifting, and Alive to explain what being a Bristol student means to him, explaining that “Since arriving in Bristol, I’ve found myself welcomed by a University of peers and a city of life, which come together to create a community like no other. Opportunities: academic, social, and creative, are everywhere; and the resources and support with which to pursue them are more than ample.”

Their prize included a champagne reception followed by a three-course dinner alongside many high-profile alumni. Sir David Attenborough received the Lifetime Achievement Award on the night. 

Thank you again to everyone who entered, and congratulations to our very lucky winners!

Win your place at the table.

Thank you for your interest in our competition to win the chance to join us at our inaugural Alumni Awards Gala Dinner. The competition is now closed and we’re busy judging the fantastic entries. 

For the first year ever, the University of Bristol is hosting an Alumni Awards Gala Dinner. This prestigious event will take place at the Mansion House in London on Tuesday 12 March. Three lucky winners will have the chance to attend the event and bring along a fellow University of Bristol student to share the fun.

David Attenborough looks at medicinal plants used by capuchin monkeys. Photo Stephen Dunleavy, copyright Humble Bee Films

The prize includes a champagne reception followed by a three-course dinner alongside many high-profile alumni. Sir David Attenborough will receive the Alumni Award for Lifetime Achievement Award on the night.

There will also be a performance by the University of Bristol Gospel Choir to enjoy and coach travel to and from Bristol will be arranged for you.

For your chance of winning, simply enter the competition via the link below and answer this simple question:

Which three words sum up what it means to you to be a Bristol student?

Explain your choice of words in 50 words or less.

Enter online here

The closing date for the competition is Friday 15 February at 5 pm and winners will be notified by the end of February. We look forward to reading your entries.

Terms and Conditions

1. This competition is run by the University of Bristol and open to all students aged 18 or over and registered at the University of Bristol until 31 March 2019.

2. The competition is free to enter, and no purchase is necessary.

3. Winners must be available to travel to London for the Alumni Awards Gala Dinner on 12 March 2019.

4. Employees, their close relatives and anyone otherwise connected with the The University of Bristol or judging the competition will be exempt from entering the competition.

5. The prize is three pairs of tickets so six students in total may attend the event as a result of this competition. The three winners can choose one fellow University of Bristol student as their guest. All attendees must be aged 18 or over and registered at the University of Bristol until 31 March 2019.

6. Each ticket winner will receive an invitation to attend the Alumni Awards Gala Dinner on Tuesday 12 March 2019 at the Mansion House in London. The Alumni Awards Gala Dinner will include a champagne reception followed by a three-course dinner and a performance by the University of Bristol Gospel Choir to accompany the Award presentations. Students will be seated with their guest and travel arrangements will be made so they travel together to and from the event on Tuesday 12 March 2019.

7. The opening date for entries to the competition is 10 am on 6 February. The closing date for entries to the competition is 5 pm on 15 February 2019. Any entries received after this time will not be accepted or considered.

8. To enter the competition, use the form above and submit three words that sum up what it means to you to be a Bristol Student. You are welcome but not obliged to support your submission with 50 words or less explaining your choice of words. If you have any questions regarding your submission, please email student-comms@bristol.ac.uk.

9. Only one entry will be accepted per person. Multiple entries from the same person will be disqualified.

10. The University of Bristol accepts no responsibility for entries not successfully completed due to technical fault or any kind including but not limited to technical malfunction, computer hardware or software failure, network or sever failure.

11. All entries received and verified by the University of Bristol will be judged by representatives from the Bristol Students’ Union and three winners will be selected. An independent adjudicator will be appointed by the University of Bristol to also judge the competition.

12. The three winners will be notified by email (using the e-mail address provided at entry) by the end of February 2019. We are not able to make contact with the unsuccessful entries on this occasion.

13. If a winner or winners cannot be contacted or do not claim the prize within 48 hours of notification, the winner’s prize will be forfeited, and The University of Bristol will be entitled to select another winner/s in accordance with the process described above.

14. Winners must attend a briefing prior to the Alumni Awards Gala Dinner when full travel arrangements will be advised. The University of Bristol will notify the winners when the briefing will take place. Attending the briefing is a mandatory requirement in order to attend the Alumni Awards Gala Dinner.

15. The University of Bristol’s decision in respect of all matters to do with the competition will be final and binding and no correspondence will be entered into.

16. By entering this competition, participants are deemed to have accepted and agreed to be bound by these terms and conditions upon entry. The University of Bristol reserves the right to refuse entry or refuse to award the prize to anyone in breach of these terms and conditions.

17. All Competition entries and any accompanying material submitted to the University of Bristol  will become the property of the University of Bristol on receipt and will not be returned. By submitting your competition entry and any accompanying material, you agree to: (a) assign to the University of Bristol all your intellectual property rights with full title guarantee; and (b) waive all moral rights.

18. By submitting your entry, you acknowledge that the University of Bristol may use your comments and quotes for marketing and editorial purposes of the University worldwide, without restriction and in any format. The purpose of such materials is to include, without limitation, undergraduate and postgraduate prospectuses, the international guide, the University website, University social media accounts and University publications including matters relating to the University’s marketing and editorial functions. We reserve the right to make minor editorial or grammatical changes to your submission, but we will not materially alter the substance of your submission.

19. Winners will be interviewed and filmed at the Alumni Awards Gala Dinner and any video footage will remain the property of the University of Bristol who may use any film content for marketing and editorial purposes of the University worldwide, without restriction and in any format. The purpose of such materials is to include, without limitation, undergraduate and postgraduate prospectuses, the international guide, the University website, and University publications including matters relating to the University’s marketing and editorial functions. We reserve the right to make minor editorial changes to your submission, but we will not materially alter the substance of your interview.

20. Any abusive or vulgar language will be disqualified and reported to the University of Bristol Secretaries Office.

21. The University of Bristol reserve the right to cancel or amend the competition and these terms and conditions without notice. Any changes will be effective immediately and the competition participants will be notified as soon as possible.

22. The University of Bristol is not responsible for changes to the event including changes to guest list or entertainment.

23. The prize is as stated, and no cash or other alternatives will be offered. The prizes are not transferable. Prizes are subject to availability and we reserve the right to substitute any prize with another of equivalent value without giving notice.

24. The winners agree to the use of their/his/her name and image in any publicity material, as well as their entry. Any personal data relating to the winner or any other participants to the competition will be used solely in accordance the University’s Data Protection Policy.

25. The University of Bristol reserves the right to cancel the competition if circumstances arise outside of its control.

26. This competition will be governed by English law and participants to the competition submit to the jurisdiction of the English courts.

ENDS

Tis the season to…be mindful.

If you haven’t met your new neighbours yet, why not take the festive season as an opportunity to say hello and maybe share a mince pie or two? They could keep an eye on your empty house over the holidays and perhaps bring your bins back in for you once you’ve gone. It’s great to build relationships with the community around you; find out what’s happening in your local area and get involved. You’ll meet new people and feel part of your neighbourhood.

Try to also remember your neighbours if you’re planning a festive celebration and the impact it might have on them. The guide to community living provides some good advice.

During this season we tend to generate a lot of extra stuff. Bristol Waste offer some useful ideas for recycling, reusing, re-gifting and donating to help us be mindful of our impact on resources and landfill.

Be mindful of safety – look after yourself, your belongings and each other. Security Services promote useful tips on personal safety. And if you are going to be away, make sure everyone takes responsibility for switching things off and locking up.

This time of year particularly can be difficult for some people, so help out where you can. Check out SU Volunteering for opportunities to make someone else’s festive season a little brighter.

#TisTheSeason

Joni Lloyd, Community Liaison Manager

 

 

If you’re staying in Bristol, don’t forget to join the University Staying in Bristol Facebook Group listing events and activities taking place over the festive season.

You can also find out about our opening hours during the holidays including study spaces, the Students’ Health Service and the sports facilities. If you want to talk to someone over the festive season, you will be able to access support via our Residential Life Support Centre, open to all students for urgent issues, whether you live in Uni residences or not. There are also self-help tools to provide support, including Big White Wall.