Freshers’ Week 2020

University-Wide Freshers’ Events

Usually, there are both a University-wide Freshers’ fair and a Sports Fair. This year, both are running online.

The virtual Freshers’ Fair will take place on Tuesday 6th and Wednesday 7th October between 10am and 4pm. As per their website, the SU writes about the Fair, “Meet and join clubs and societies, learn more about your new SU, grab awesome freebies/discounts and play to win amazing prizes as you explore the different areas of the fair. This unique event replaces the usual in-person freshers’ fair due to Covid-19 but you can still expect two fun-filled days showcasing everything Cambridge has to offer.”

Cambridge SU. Your virtual fresher's Fair is here. 6th - 7th October, 10am-4pm.

The virtual Sport’s Fair will take place from Friday 2nd – Friday 9th October.

They’ll “have over 80 clubs in attendance, who have created brilliant videos to show what their clubs are all about, and to answer your questions as a prospective member!

Each club will have a platform displaying all of their web and social media channels, sign up information for tryouts and taster sessions, as well as the carefully cultivated masterpieces that are the welcome videos

Sports Fair. Friday 2nd - Friday 9th October. Available under https://www.sport.cam.ac.uk/sportsfair

Required Consent Workshops

All incoming graduate students at Sidney need to attend one consent workshop and we very much encourage you to attend other workshops as well. 

Each year, the JCR and MCRs deliver consent workshops to incoming students to provide a foundation for challenging the views and assumptions associated with a culture of sexual violence. While these workshops are not able to cover this complex issue fully, they can assist students in identifying when their boundaries have been violated and how to challenge problematic behaviours and assumptions that undermine consent. They should not be seen as an opportunity to “scare” incoming students but to raise awareness of the ways consent impacts different communities and can play a role in building healthy sexual relationships. (Find more information on the University-wide consent workshops for Fresher’s here)

Although our Welfare and Women’s Officers have received consent workshop training by the CUSU, together with College we have decided to hire an outside organisation, Sexplain, this year to deliver these workshops as professionally as possible. Please attend one of our consent sessions. If you have a valid reason for not wanting to attend those workshops, such as previous experiences of sexual violence, your personal well-being of course comes first and foremost. The sessions will be workshops-like and an intersectional, non-binary approach will be followed. Trigger warnings (content notes) will be given and you can leave anytime during the workshop if you feel uncomfortable. 

Spaces are limited to 25 Sidney graduate students (30 for consent) to ensure interactivity during the sessions but every Fresher will be able to attend one Consent workshop. Returning students are welcome to sign-up for the other workshops but priority may be given to new students. One of our committee members will be present at each event to answer questions related to college, Cambridge, etc., but please feel free to reach out to us before or after the workshops as well.

  • Consent Workshops (incl break). Required: Please attend one of the 4 sessions on consent. This workshop explores boundaries and consent in practice. Attendees will examine how consent and communication are interconnected to ensure that pleasure is at the centre of all of our sexual experiences.

Wednesday 7th October, 1-2:30pm

Thursday 8th October, 4-5:30pm

Friday 9th October, 10-11:30am

Friday 9th October, 12-1:30pm

  • Gender, Identity, and Sexuality (60min). Highly Encouraged. In this workshop we’ll explore intersectional identities, variations of gender and sexuality and how people may or may not relate to them! Key things answered: what is cis-heteronormativity? Why do pronouns matter? What does sex positivity really mean?

Wednesday 7th October, 3-4pm

Friday 9th October, 11-12pm

  • Intersectionality (incl. hate and bystander intervention) (60min). Highly Encouraged. The workshop will examine what intersectionality is and how it can be used to highlight power and privilege in our society. We will explore examples of where intersectionality or an intersectional lens is lacking and the impact this has; and how intersectionality is essential to social justice.

Wednesday 7th October, 4-5pm

Thursday 8th October, 3-4pm

  • Self-Care and Wellbeing for Sexual Mental Health. Encouraged. A workshop where we will discuss the link between our sexual and mental health. Key things covered: how does body image and self care link to our sexuality? Why and how should we reconnect with our body.

Wednesday 7th October, 1-2pm

  • Digital Intimacies: Focus on Online Dating. Encouraged. This session will look at people’s experiences of online dating today. From unsolicited dick pics to ghosting, the workshop will tackle common examples of simply frustrating – to highly problematic – behaviours online. We will explore how to navigate digital dating in an ethical way whilst still prioritising personal well-being, as well as signposting to relevant support services.

Thursday 8th October, 2-3pm

Please sign-up for the sessions on Eventbrite by clicking the links. You will receive log-in details for the Google Meet in advance of the sessions via email. If you haven’t signed-up and received confirmation of your attendance, you will not be admitted to the event to ensure only Sidney grads attend the workshops and they aren’t overrun. We will run a waiting list so please also cancel your booking if you can no longer make a time slot. If you have any questions or really want to make a certain workshop even if it has already filled-up, please get in touch with Carla (sidneymcr-women@srcf.ucam.org).

You can activate a close capturing feature on Google Meet for accessibility.

Please also have a look at our resources page on Consent and Sexual Health.

Mentorship Scheme

This year, we are running a mentorships scheme for incoming Fresher’s. You will automatically be assigned a mentor who will be another Sidney grad student. Your mentors will establish contact with you over email. But if you haven’t heard from your mentor by the 5th of October, please lets us know, and we’ll get you in touch with them! Your mentor should be available to answer any questions that you have about Sidney life, and it may be worthwhile to have a chat with them in your first few weeks here. If you have any questions about the mentorship scheme, please get in touch with Jinal (sidneymcr-external@srcf.ucam.org).

We are running a short online introductory event for the mentorship scheme on Sunday, 4th October, at 6pm. See the Google calendar for more details.

Sidney Sussex MCR Photography Contest: Freshers, we are looking for your first impressions of Cambridge to virtually share and celebrate your first few days at Sidney! Share your pictures on the following categories with us for the chance to win an exciting prize. 1. Architecture, 2. Nature & Landscape, 3. Student Life, 4. Sidney Sussex. Share your images in your Instagram stories or feed tagging us (@sidneysussexmcr) or via email. We'll try to share as many post as possible and will feature the images in the Fresher's Gallery on our Website, too. Entries may also feature on the Sidney Sussex website (https://www.sid.cam.ac.uk/) and be shared across Sidney’s social media channels. (We ask that you do not share any disturbing, graphic, discriminatory, or offensive content and we reserve the right to not share these images..) You can send in 2 pictures for every category but will only be able to win in one. Please email them to sidneymcr-welfare@srcf.ucam.org by 29th Novemberat 4pm (optionally, you can also include a short description of your image, e.g. where and why you took it, so we can get to know each other). Please also let us know whether you'd be happy for your name and description to be featured along your picture in the gallery.