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College life

When you join us, you’ll become a member of a small, distinct community, which will become your home from home whether you live on or off campus.

More than a place to live

York is one of a handful of UK universities with a college system. As well as a place to live, your college will provide you with a network of support and a calendar of events and activities to help you settle in, develop skills and explore interests. You’ll meet people of all ages, nationalities and disciplines and most likely make friends for life.

Got a question about college life? Talk to a current student online to find out all you need to know.

Chat with a student

Activities and events

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Getting involved with college events during Welcome Week is a great way to help you settle in.

Getting involved with college events during Welcome Week is a great way to help you settle in.

Most college events are organised by and for students. Events run throughout the year and include big summer parties, club meet-ups, live music events, guest lectures, Christmas fairs, bake-off competitions and much more.

Organising, or simply attending college events is a great way to get to know people from across the university and get fully immersed in campus life.

Find out more about student life at York.

College sport

Every week colleges compete in over 20 college sporting leagues. There is regular training and coaching for all team members, who range from beginners to seasoned pros, so whatever your sporting ability you can take part.

You could even play for your college against Durham University in our annual College Varsity competition.

Leadership and volunteering

Our Careers service and the Students' Union also offer a range of volunteering and fundraising opportunities.

Run for a position on your college committee and you could deliver campaigns, design and sell college clothing, co-ordinate the sports teams or arrange socials. You’ll also have the chance to organise volunteering and charity fundraising for projects you’re passionate about. 

For anything you take part in, you can also get your skills and experience recognised through the innovative York Award.

Support and guidance

Our team of Second and Third Year Contacts (STYCs) will help you move in and settle quickly and student mentors offer support and guidance throughout your first year. Your college team will welcome and support you while you’re here and resident tutors provide someone to talk to. 

As well as your college, there is a network of other support services should you need it. Your college tutors can signpost you to these services:

Which college?

Each college has its own personality depending on its history, accommodation, layout, location, facilities and the people who live there. But every college aims to cultivate your academic curiosity, develop your skills and employability and support your health and wellbeing.

You’ll grow to love your college, whichever it is.

Although some departments are located within college buildings, you don't need to apply for a particular college based on your course. Our campus location means that all our colleges are a short walk to our departments and teaching buildings.