Once you know you are definitely coming to Fitzwilliam College, you will want to start making arrangements and find out what to expect when you arrive.
Fitzwilliam College membership Form
Please complete and return this form as soon as your membership with Fitzwilliam has been completed. there is no need to wait until you know you have funding, or until you have met other conditions College membership form »
College Financial Information
The College form asks for further information about your source of funds. This is for College use only and will help us to invoice you correctly at the start of the first Term. Please complete the form as soon as possible and before 1 September.
You may apply for accommodation as soon as you have a University conditional offer and membership with Fitzwilliam. Rooms are allocated once the University offer is confirmed, so its best not to delay the application. Accommodation is not allocated to anyone who has not applied. Information and Application form.
The College Nurse will email all incoming students in mid/late September and ask them to complete an online medical questionnaire.
University Student Registration Process
This is to ensure that the information the University holds on your record is correct. It is not a way of registering for, or applying for, a course of study. You must wait for an email from the Student Registry with details of how to log-in before attempting the process. Once completed you will get access to your University email accounts. Its important that you do this before you arrive in Cambridge. More information.
Fitzwilliam MCR welcome booklet
This is prepared by the current students for you and will be posted in early August. Please make sure the Mailing Address on your applicant portal is up to date.
Facebook group for incoming postgraduate students.
The Postgraduate Office and MCR Committee host a Facebook group which is optional for incoming postgraduates. It provides additional information and helps new students to ‘meet each other’ before arrival. This will open in June and all applicants with College membership will be invited to join. To find out more or request to join - contact the Postgraduate Office.
The University International Student Guide provides practical pre-arrival and orientation information to help students coming from outside the UK plan their move to Cambridge.
University information services - Collect your Cambridge login, set up your @cam email and download free software.
Cars in Cambridge
Students cannot keep cars in Cambridge without permission >>more information.
Storing your belongings
The College cannot take responsibility for your property before you arrive. There is no storage available. If you need to send belongings by post, please arrange for them to arrive at the same time as you do.#
Your Academic Documents - Original certificates and Transcripts
Remember to bring your original academic documents to Cambridge. To meet the Academic Condition of your offer you will have uploaded copies of your certificate and transcripts to the Applicant Self Service. You need to bring these documents to Cambridge in case they are needed for checks.
Arrival Dates - Michaelmas Term 2023
Michaelmas term 2023
The main arrival date for postgraduate students arriving to Fitzwilliam College accommodation is Sunday 24 September. The MCR will start Welcome Week on 24th and events will continue throughout the following week. This should give plenty of time to settle into Cambridge before courses start during the week beginning 2 October.
Early arrival can be arranged for those whose course starts in September. Please discuss this with the Postgraduate Office before booking flights.
A note about early arrival dates –if you arrive before 1 October, into privately rented accommodation, College couples flats or College single self-contained flats, its likely that the Cambridge City Council will charge Council Tax (local tax) for the period up to the start of your course. Students are normally exempt from this local tax whilst studying, unless sharing with others who are not students. >>more information about Council tax.
The official start date of courses in Michaelmas Term is always 1 October. This date does not change year to year. However, the University 'Full Term' dates do vary and in 2023 the start of Full Term falls on 3 October. (term dates).
All students are expected to be in Cambridge by this date, unless they have permission to arrive late. Most departments will arrange their orientation from 3 October onwards.
Lent and Easter term arrivals
If you start in the Lent Term (January) or the Easter Term (April), there will be fewer scheduled events. Please contact the Postgraduate Office to discuss arrival dates.
College rooms are available from 2.00pm on the day of arrival. All rooms keys are collected from the College Porters Lodge.
Out of hours arrival
The College Porters' Lodge (Reception) is open 24 hours a day. Overnight and evenings, the Duty Porter acts as a security officer, so may have to leave the Lodge from time to time and lock the front door. If the Lodge is locked when you arrive, please wait for the Duty Porter's return.
Go to the Porters Lodge at the College main entrance on Storey’s Way.
Collect your Room Key
Collect your University Card
Find your pigeonhole - the welcome pack from the College Graduate Office will be in your pigeonhole
Meet the MCR - The MCR will have a welcome table in the Porters Lodge foyer on Sunday 24 September. The MCR Freshers Committee will also be in touch with you about events they are planning.
If you start your course in the Michaelmas term, there will be events you must attend and a few more which are optional.
If you start your course in January or April, there will be fewer scheduled events - please visit the Graduate Officer (L staircase) soon after you arrive in order to check matriculation and other details.
The dates below apply to those arriving for the Michaelmas Term 2023. If you are arriving in January or April, there are few specific dates, but please complete everything as soon as possible.
Connect to the College network
College rooms have internet connections for your own computer, and there are computer facilities in the library. For help and instructions, visit our Computing section.
Complete the Student on-line Registration process
This is an annual process which should be completed before 1 October. If you have not completed it before your arrival in Cambridge, it should be completed immediately. The process allows you to collect your University email address and passwords and to check the personal data that is held about you.
All students with a student visa are required to present their passport, entry vignette (if applicable) and visa card for checking at the College Postgraduate Office during the first week of term.
Pay your College bill
Your bill will be sent to you via email during the first week of Full Term. Payment of the Michaelmas Term 2023 bill is due by Wednesday 11 October. For more information and what's included, visit our College Bill page.
Open a bank account
If you are new to the UK, you may want to open a bank account. Many UK banks offer accounts tailored to the needs of students so it is best to speak to several and find out which is best for you. The University International Students website has information on opening a bank account.
Student certification letters - The bank may ask for a letter from Fitzwilliam College confirming your student status. Letters can be obtained from the Graduate Office with a few days’ notice. Please use the letter request form.
Buy an academic gown
You will need a gown for the matriculation photo on 7 October - and for any Formal Hall dinners you attend, and for your graduation. The Student Union website explains which gown you will need and where to get it.. The two criteria for determining which gown you need are;
a) whether you hold a Cambridge University degree already
b) your age
You can buy or hire gowns from the Student Union, or from the outfitters shops Ede and Ravenscroft, or Ryder and Amies. Wherever you buy, it is recommended that you read the notes on which gown you need, included in the Student Union site. [It will not be the gown of the degree you are about to study for!]
Meet your tutor
The College has a team of Postgraduate Tutors. In the first week or two of term, you will have a chance to meet your assigned postgraduate Tutor (this may be in person or online). Your Tutor's name will be included in the 'Welcome Pack' in your pigeon hole and also on your University record (CamSIS) after the start of Term. Your Tutor assists with non-academic care and welfare issues while you’re at College. Your Tutor does not teach you – for teaching, your department will allocate a supervisor and/or course director.
Register with a local doctor
All students need to register with a local doctor, in order to access the NHS services (information available on arrival at College). The nearest practice to Fitzwilliam College is at 1 Huntingdon Road. There are also other Doctors practices elsewhere in Cambridge. Do this in your first week -don't risk having to registering quickly in an emergency situation.
Find out about social events
The MCR Committee organizes a varied programme of events to bring the new graduate community together and to help them get to know Cambridge. Visit the MCR website.
New postgraduate students should attend these events at the start of the Michaelmas term. The College MCR also distributes a term card of social events.
If you start your course in January or April, there will be fewer scheduled events - please visit the Graduate Office soon after you arrive in order to check matriculation and other details.
Induction Afternoon - Friday 29 September
Buffet Lunch with Postgrad Tutors | 1.00pm | Upper Halls
Join your College postgraduate tutor for a buffet lunch.
Welcome talk | 2.00pm | Auditorium
Introduction by the Postgraduate Tutors and other members of the College. All new postgraduate students should attend.
Matriculation ID checks | The Grove
ID checks follow the introduction meeting. All students should take their Passport or other photo ID to The Grove Lawn immediately after their Welcome talk. Matriculation is not valid without the ID check.
Matriculation is a very significant moment, at which you formally join the College. The signing process is online. If you have not previously been a student at the University of Cambridge, you must complete the process in order to matriculate. A link to the on-line process will be sent via email before the start of Term.
Tea and Biscuits | Grove Lawn
The Welcome talk will be immediately followed by Matriculation ID checks and cups of tea/coffee and biscuits on the Grove Lawn with the MCR Committee.
Postgraduate Welcome - Saturday 7 October
Celebrate your membership of Fitzwilliam College - watch out for email updates on all of these events.
Postgraduate photo - 4.45pm | The Grove Lawn
A formal College photograph of all postgraduate students, marking your arrival and matriculation. You will be able to order a copy for yourself. Academic gowns are required. Individual photos will be taken followed by a group photo of the whole 2023 cohort.
Postgraduate Talks - 5.30pm | Auditorium
A series of short talks on their own research by some of our current PhD students. The talks will start straight after the photography is finished.
Matriculation Dinner - 7.30pm | Dining Hall
Marking your matriculation and welcoming you to the College, this important occasion helps to establish the intellectual and social exchanges which are central to this community and to our development within it. Academic gowns are required for all formal dinners. This event requires booking. Booking form will be sent in September.
Pre-dinner drinks are at 7.00pm - Upper Halls.