woman signing in at matriculation

Getting Started

Just arrived and not sure how to pay for food or get on the wifi? Look no further!

This webpage will focus on some of the most essential information that you will need to settle into life at Wolfson. More information will be added as we near the start of term. 

Welcome to Wolfson College! We hope that you will feel at home here very soon. To find out what some of our current members think about Wolfson, watch Wolfson In One Word (the film is playing silently on this page if you hover over it). Please check the Latest Guidance regularly for COVID-related information.

 

Pre-arrival set up of University Account and online Student Registration

You may set up your University Account and complete online Student Registration as soon as you receive the email with instructions.  This will have been sent by the Student Registry to your personal email address in late August or early September.  Answers to queries about the process, can be found on the New Students pages.

After completing registration you will be prompted to retrieve your CRSID  (also referred to as your Raven ID) and log-in information. This gives you access to:

  • your @cam email account.  It is essential to check this email account regularly, as all College and University communications will be directed to this address.  Departments, Faculties and instructors will be writing you at this address from the first week of October.  All students are expected to monitor and respond promptly to messages sent to their @cam account.
  • Your Microsoft Exchange Online email account
  • any Raven-protected resources and course materials provided by Departments and Faculties through intranets and the Moodle Virtual Learning Environment (VLE).
  • many of the University Library’s online resources.

If you have any questions about setting up your online email account, please see information on IT for New Starters.

Before you travel

Further information on what to do before you travel is available on the International Students Pre-arrival Information page. This includes the following topics:

Police Registration

If you are from one of the following countries and your stay is for longer than six months, UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) requires you to register with the police:

Afghanistan, Algeria, Argentina, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Belarus, Bolivia, Brazil, China, Colombia, Cuba, Egypt, Georgia, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kirgizstan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Libya, Moldova, Morocco, North Korea, Oman, Palestine, Peru, Qatar, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Syria, Tajikistan, Tunisia, Turkey, Turkmenistan, United Arab Emirates, Ukraine, Uzbekistan, Yemen.

You must also do this within 7 days of arrival. However, you can ask for an appointment for a later date if you have to quarantine on arrival. Detailed information about the registration process is available online

Getting to College

There is detailed information about how to get to Cambridge by bus, train, car and plane on the college's Find Us page.

  • The main access to the College is from Barton Road and the car park is situated at that entrance. Visitors are allowed to use the car park for a short stay, please report into the Porters' Lodge. Students are not permitted to bring cars to Cambridge, please read the conditions. An exception may be made via your College Tutor and with consent from the Senior Tutor (you may need to provide additional supporting evidence).
  • All bicycles must be registered at the Porters’ Lodge; the Porters will ask you to mark your bike with a number. Bicycle racks are provided around the perimeter of the College and bicycles left there should always be locked. Students are asked not to park their bicycles in the designated areas for visitors adjacent to the flagpole, nor the shed reserved for staff cycles. Bicycles, scooters, hoverboards, powerboards etc. are not allowed in the Front, East or West Courts; please do not ride or leave them in any of the other courts. If you are new to cycling or the UK please visit this website for helpful hints and training opportunities.
  • Pedestrians may arrive from Grange Road, at the front of college, or via Selwyn Gardens (back gate), a turning off Grange Road. This is convenient for the centre of town, the University departments on Sidgwick Avenue, and the University Library. It is also the delivery entrance of the College. The gates are locked at 18:00 until 06:00 so you will need your University card to gain access between those times.

 

Things to do when you arrive:
documents for checking;college processes; setting up a bank account; requesting a letter as proof of student status;registering with a doctor

Look at the Freshers' Checklist to find out the key things to do when you arrive at Wolfson. More information is included below.

The college site plan and virtual tour will help until you learn your way around.

Head first to the Porters’ Lodge to collect your University Card and a welcome letter with a checklist of tasks to complete during your first two weeks in Cambridge. If you have booked College accommodation, you will also pick up your room keys here.  Our friendly Porters provide information and help on many practical matters, including key issue, security, first aid, mail, messages, bicycles, car parking, etc. and will be able to answer most questions you may have, or direct you to the person in College who can. Porters are on duty around the clock, but the Lodge may be closed between midnight and 05.00.  

Head next to the Tutorial Office, which will be temporarily stationed in the Karen Spärk Jones Room to present your original identification documents for checking. The Tutorial Office is at the heart of the College’s support for students, managing everything from admissions to matriculation, from travel grants to academic prizes, examinations to graduation ceremonies. Our friendly, capable staff—Rajashree Dhanaraj (Tutorial Office Manager), Kim Allen (Postgraduate Administrator), Debbie Miles (Undergraduate Administrator) and Sam Langley (Tutorial Administrator) –  will be happy to answer any questions you may have about College life, tutorial support and University bureaucracy.

What you need to bring to the Tutorial Office within the first week of term:

If you are a/an: Bring the following original documents (copies or scans are not accepted):
UK national

EITHER a valid passport OR a full birth/adoption certificate issued in the UK, Channel Islands, Isle of Man of Ireland; OR a current photo-card driving licence (full or provisional), issued in the UK or Ireland, and confirms the holder was born within the EEA; OR a Deed of change of name; OR a certificate of naturalisation or registration as a British Citizen

EEA or Swiss national

EITHER a valid passport, OR a current National Identity card issued by an EEA country, OR a Registration Certificate, Permanent Residence card OR other document certifying permanent residence issued by the UK Home Office

non-EEA national

A valid passport and your Tier 4 Biometric Residence Permit (BRP).  Your visa must be sponsored by the University of Cambridge for the particular course you are undertaking this year.

Students are advised by the Home Office to collect their BRP within 10 days. This does not apply in the following circumstances: 
1.    to students who will collect their BRP from their College. 
2.    to students who will collect their BRP from the Post Office and need to self-isolate on arrival. They should collect their BRP as soon as possible after the 14 day self-isolation period. 

Tier 4 students from Australia, Canada, Japan, New Zealand, Singapore, South Korea and the USA from 3 September can enter the UK using the eGates, if they are open at your port of entry. This will make passing through immigration control quicker as you won’t need to join a queue to speak to a Border Force officer. 

If you use eGates, you will need to bring your e-ticket, boarding pass or email confirmation from the airline to confirm your date of entry instead. 
 

Undergraduate Certificates confirming all examination and/or course results required to meet your offer of admission  (e.g. GCSE, A-levels, results of prior FE or HE study)

 

College Processes

You must register your personal details, including term-time address and emergency contacts on CamSIS. This is Cambridge’s system for handling student information, records and transactions. It is the official repository of your record from application all the way through to graduation. Please note that although you may have received your Raven ID and Password you will not be able to access your Self Service account until the start date of your first term. When you are able to login, please follow these instructions to complete registration:

  • Online Registration - It is essential you update your CamSIS term-time address and emergency contacts as soon as possible.
  • Keeping Term: Once a term Tutorial Office will send an online form to full-time students to fill-in to confirm that they have `kept` term.

Setting up a bank account

If you want to open a bank account, you will probably need a letter from the college to provide proof of address and attendance at the University. Please fill in this online form. It will take 48 hours (Monday to Friday) for the letter to be produced.

Requesting a letter 

Please complete this form if you need letters for Council Tax Exemption, Student Certification or to register with the GP.

Electronic letters will be produced until mid-September. If you need hard copies of letters, kindly wait until the week commencing 21 September. We will need 48 hours after the submission of the request to produce them but will attempt to do them earlier if at all possible.

Registering with a doctor and medical advice

At this busy time in your life, it is important to remember that doing something other than work (which is hopefully fun!) is important for your physical and mental health, even when you're a time-poor student.

Instructions are available here. Registering with a local GP is very important as you cannot receive any medical attention in Cambridge until you are registered with a local surgery. 

Induction timetable

Induction Weekend activities are intended to introduce you to College and University life and – just as importantly – to other students. The Tutorial Office will be open at times to be confirmed: come by to introduce yourself and have your documents checked. The Wolfson College Student Association (always referred to as WCSA, pronounced ‘wuksah’) is busy planning a lively programme of activities. More details to follow shortly.

Please note: 

ALL NEW STUDENTS - both undergraduates and postgraduates:

Induction sessions will be held on Sunday 4 October; more details to follow. Please notify Ms Rajashree Dhanaraj if you are unable to be in College for the Induction Weekend.

NEW UNDERGRADUATES:

We are currently planning an informal welcome in the late afternoon or early evening of Thursday, 1 October, followed by a number of workshops on Friday, 2 October. The workshops on Friday, 2 October, should be considered as mandatory for all new students who will be commencing their first undergraduate degree and recommended for anyone commencing a second undergraduate degree. They are intended as an introduction to university study and to the College's exciting WolfWorks programme for new students, but also to your cohort of first-year students. These sessions are one of the principal ways that new students meet one another. You will need to book additional nights of accommodation in order to move into your College room. The standard College licence for Michaelmas term begins on 3 October. Anyone who wishes to arrive before that, no matter the reason, must write to the accommodation manager in order to book the specific extra nights required.

 

Wolfson College Students' Association

The Wolfson College Students' Association (WCSA) is the official student body of Wolfson College.

WCSA is the centre of student self-governance in College. We provide many opportunities to get involved in college life, from socialising activities, to clubs and societies, to representing the student voice in high-level college meetings. Any Wolfson student can stand for election to become an official student representative.

The WCSA Officers (ie. the student reps) help shape the life for all students at Wolfson College. If you ever have suggestions or feedback, or have an event, society, idea, or something you feel you could do well, we encourage you to take charge of it and use WCSA as an enabler to getting started or making that change — the money is here, as are the people who can help you, all we need is the drive from the student body to get engaged!

Most of the opportunities available will be introduced to you in the first days/weeks after you arrive.

Without a doubt, the most important student representatives that will impact your college life are the WCSA Entertainment Officers (“Ents” for short). They are the social secretaries and are responsible for organising all social activities, events and the general good vibes for Wolfson students. If you, or indeed you and your friends, feel you could do a better job than you are getting, we implore you to get involved! The more people doing it, and the more those people feel they can do a better job than the last, the better the good times for all.

And we do love some good times: stay tuned to find out what's on in the coming Wolfson Freshers' Week 2020.

WCSA elections are held a few weeks into Michaelmas term. We encourage prospective WCSA officers to enquire as soon as they feel comfortable. You can nominate yourself for a WCSA position towards the end of October and voting takes place in early November.

Have a fantastic time while here at Wolfson, and in Cambridge, and we wish you the best of luck with everything you encounter!

Check our website for further information.

Accommodation

Your lease (also known as a ‘licence’) for your College room (if you have booked one) begins on Saturday, 3 October. If you need to arrive before the 3rd you MUST contact Jo Fisher, the College Accommodation Manager to request additional nights in College accommodation. 

Students attending the Undergraduate Induction will need to pre-book at least 2 extra nights of accommodation, as the first induction session begins in the evening of Thursday, 1 October. Postgraduates or Graduate Medics (whose courses have an early start date) may also need to request additional nights of accommodation. Rooms are available after 14:00 on the day booked for your arrival.

Comprehensive information about College accommodation may be found on the college website.

Food

Wolfson operates a cashless payment system to pay for meals in the College dining hall. We only accept cashless payments and credit/debit cards: no cash!

In order to make cashless payments, you will need to set up a UPay account.  All members have an account on the UPay system; your University ID card will be linked with your UPay account before you arrive. Once you have your Raven ID you can set up your account to make cashless payments.

Recognising that some students may not yet have a debit or credit card, the College has programmed your University card with a temporary overdraft that you may use to purchase food (up to a maximum of £150) until the Division of Term (09 November). After this date any amounts charged against the overdraft will be transferred to your College Account and you will need to pay them off as soon as possible.

For information about cafeteria opening times and menus, please see the Food web pages.

Medical Advice

College Nurse

Sally Maccallum is the College Nurse. You'll find her clinic at Morrison House, which is the building near the flag pole. Online appointments can be made by emailing Sally.

Self-Care

Self-care is the best choice to treat minor illnesses, ailments and injuries. A range of common illnesses and complaints, such as coughs and colds, sore throats, upset stomachs, and aches and pains can be treated with a well-stocked medicine cabinet and plenty of rest.

More information is available on the Health and Wellbeing page.

 

Finance

Payment for the full course fee and the first term’s rent (where applicable) is due not later than 22 October.  Bills will be emailed to you not later than 8 October. If you expect to have any difficulties in paying your bill by the 22, contact your College Tutor immediately (the name and email of your Tutor is in your Welcome Letter at the Porters' Lodge). Students who are unable to pay their course fees may be withdrawn from their course.  

More information on payment of fees and our most Frequently Asked Questions are on the Finance webpages.

Support

Students can, for whatever reason, find the transition to University challenging and leave them feeling overwhelmed. If this is the case there are various forms of support available in College and in the University, including the College Counsellor and the University Counselling Service. The college has a webpage outlining mental health support options that are available to you.

Tutors will be available at throughout full term and at other times, providing an appointment is made.
N.B. In case of EMERGENCY students can contact their own Tutor via the Porters’ Lodge: 01223 335900

IT

Wolfson has hundreds of wifi points, fast internet and expert IT provision to give students access to a range of digital tools essential for University life. The IT Department is located in the Jack King Building.

University Computer Account

Access will be made available to Undergraduates and Graduates as follows:

  • New Undergraduate students will be able to complete the Student Registration and Account Set Up process from the end of August (once their place has been confirmed)
  • New Postgraduate students will be able to complete the Student Registration and Account Set Up process from early-mid August (once their place has been confirmed)

Students will have access to the following services, once they have completed the process above:

  • their MS exchange email (ExOL) email account
  • any specific Raven-protected resources and course materials provided by their college and department (the college or department will need to complete any relevant set up activity in order to facilitate this)
  • some of the University Library’s online resources.

Helpful leaflets can be found on the University Information Services page for new starters

Students will have access to the following services, once they have completed the process above:

  • their MS exchange email (ExOL) email account
  • any specific Raven-protected resources and course materials provided by their college and department (the college or department will need to complete any relevant set up activity in order to facilitate this)
  • some of the University Library’s online resources.

Getting online in Wolfson

To start using our speedy and reliable WiFi, follow the instructions on the IT webpagesThere is also a computer room, with printers, on the ground floor of the Library. You will need your University Card to get into the room.More information about IT support is available online

Library

Wolfson Library, which you may also find referred to as the Lee Library, is on the east side of the college.

The library is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week (apart from Christmas Day and New Year's Day). You need your Cambridge card to get into the rooms and may bring drinks and cold food into the library.

The Reading Room is upstairs and contains well-equipped study spaces, our book collections and  the borrowing machine (the returns box is in the foyer). Meg Westbury, the Librarian, has her office here too. Laura Jeffrey, the Academic Skills Librarian is based in the Sir David Williams Room, a study space on the ground floor. Please do get in touch with them if you have any questions about access to resources, but also how to use them effectively, manage references and data, take notes, read critically, manage your time, publish your research or other aspects of academic skills. We will be updating our web pages nearer the start of term with more information and details about how our library and services will work this year or see our guide:

To help you prepare for life at university the University Libraries have created CamGuides - one resource for Undergraduates and another for Master's. The two distinct resources are tailored to particular levels of study and answer key questions you may have before starting your course and throughout the first term.

CamGuides information and digital essentials

 

Communications

Welcome to Wolfson!

The Communications Office at Wolfson College manages the College website, social media, digital and print communications. I am the Communications Manager Fiona Gilsenan and I work closely with WCSA to promote and support their communications as well. Here’s a quick guide to College comms.

We are Social You can find the College on the following platforms. The wonderful Lee Library is on social media too.

Wolfson social media

Now that you are a Cambridge University student, your own social media accounts may be more likely to attract attention, so adjust your privacy settings if needed and, as always, think before you post.

SNAP! I am often running around with a camera, phone or video camera and I post photos and videos on our website, social media and Flickr account. Don’t want your photo taken? Just let me know.

Our Website The website is regularly updated with news, events and the ever-popular cafeteria menus. If you can’t find something by searching, or if you find a broken link, please send us an email.

Events We have a packed programme of events at Wolfson. During Term I send out a This Week at Wolfson email  with WCSA every Monday to let you know what’s happening during the upcoming 7 days (and nights). If you don’t receive it automatically, you can subscribe at this link.

Your NewsI love to write about our students. If you’ve published a paper, done some interesting fieldwork, are presenting at a conference, performing in a play or concert, or anything else of interest please let me know so I can promote it. We also have a lively sporting culture here at Wolfson, so let me know if you are competing at Collegiate or Varsity level. Our alumni and members really enjoy reading about the successes of our students. You can always reach me by email. I look forward to getting to know you this year!

College contacts and useful links

College contacts

If you are not sure who to contact, please call the Porters' Lodge on 01223 335900. If your call is urgent and you are unable to get an answer on this number, please call  07774 017556 in an emergency.

More college contacts are included in the Points of Contact list.

Helpful information for new students