Top tips for starting at university


Starting a new chapter in your life can always be slightly terrifying, some even more so than others, like starting university for instance. Suddenly, you are on your own with no parents around to help you make decisions on life matters and academics. Being independent is of course not a bad thing but it definitely takes time to get used to. Some new experiences will show up in your life unexpectedly but for some of them you can prepare for and we will let you know how!

Bank account

Before going to university, make sure you set up a bank account for yourself. Many banks have student accounts available which have a minimum banking fee per month. You will have to prove that you are a student, however, so take an acceptance letter or proof of registration letter with you. It is also necessary to take any identification cards with you, as well as a proof of address. If you are unsure what to take with you to the bank, perhaps phone the bank beforehand or look them up online.

Top tips for starting at university

Only pack the essentials

Do not take too many things with you once you are ready to go to university. You will very soon discover that space is limited in most resident halls and that it gets crowded easily. It is also a good idea to hold off with buying compulsory books for your course. Many students who are a few years ahead of you will tell you which books are important to buy. Many students also set up drives where they keep notes so wait for all of the information before spending heaps of money on books you will not even open.

Mingle

You will soon realize that most students are just as nervous as you are, so try to reach out to people and learn to get comfortable with it. Most people want to have a conversation and friends just as much as you do but they need someone to walk up to them and greet them first. If you are still struggling with finding friends that you identify with, try getting a hobby or join a sports team. There are so many extracurricular activities available at university, so try a few out before deciding to join one permanently.

Academics

This is the one topic that can make or break you at university. The point of university, after all, is to study and to pass your course. In school someone, usually a teacher or sometimes even a parent, was there to remind you to stay on top of things but this will not be the case at university. Set up a schedule and try to stick to it. Do not fall behind more than 2 weeks at a time and if you do it is time to stop partying and focus on work. If you are really struggling with a subject, identify this very quickly and get help, either from the lecturer, an older student, or even a tutor.

Top tips for starting at university

Parents

As much as we all crave our independence, you will soon realize the value of having a support system and having your own personal cheerleaders. So do not cut them out of your life and pick up the phone every now and then and let them know how you are doing.