After two years of hard graft and more exams than you can shake a stick at, you’ve hopefully now received your A-Level results and have won that place at university. Starting higher education can be an exciting time but it’s also a significant period of change in your life. We’ve put together these seven tips to help you navigate your way through your first few weeks.
1. Fresher’s Week
There is a lot of hype and pressure on Fresher’s Week. It is a great opportunity meet people you’ll be studying with on your course, living with in halls and the rest of the student body. However, don’t put too much pressure on yourself to make it the most memorable week of your time there.
2. Don’t pack everything!
You’ll be tempted to pack everything you own but try to only take the essentials. That said, don’t forget the paperwork from your university, including your acceptance letters and forms and a copy of your A-Level Certificates. You’ll more than likely be living in shared accommodation, which inevitably means everyone turns up with multiple pots and pans into a finite amount of storage space! You can always get things once you’ve arrived.
3. Connect on Social Media
Social media is a great way to meet people before you arrive on campus; Facebook groups and Twitter hashtags can connect you to your future course or flat mates before you meet in person. Everyone is in the same boat and will be keen to build new relationships.
4. It’s ok to miss home
Leaving home can be tough. Throw a new environment, new people, studying and more responsibilities into the mix and the chances are that even if you can’t wait to leave now, give it a month and you might be starting to feel a bit homesick. It’s completely normal to feel like this. Keep in touch with your family and friends back at home to make the transition easier. Setting up group chats is a great way of keeping connected with those you’ve left behind.
5. Learn the basics before you go
Don’t know how to cook a basic meal or how to wash your clothes without shrinking them? These next few weeks before you start University are crucial to learning those essentials before you fly the nest. It doesn’t need to be a Michelin-starred meal, but a few essentials will set you on the right path for the years ahead.
6. Get involved
Most universities have a full calendar for Fresher’s week, filled with day and night-time activities. These might not all be for you but try to go to as many as you can, either with your course mates or flat mates to start building those new relationships.
The day your student loan comes in can be quite exciting; you’re suddenly flush with money! As tempting as it is to head to the Student Union and take advantage of their offers, remember that this money needs to last you for the entire term… Set out a weekly budget to cover your rent, any bills, groceries, and socialising. This will help ensure you aren’t resorting to beans on toast for the rest of the term.