How to Prepare for University
Congratulations! You got into university! You should be proud of yourself. However, once the excitement wears off, the realities sink in. Am I ready for uni? Am I doing the right course? Will I make friends? Will I like my flatmates? Will I struggle with the workload? These worries are all pretty normal for someone who is about to embark on the next stage of their lives and has no idea what to expect. Don’t panic, there is nothing to fear at all! Below we have discussed some of the things that you can do to prepare yourself, so you can make sure your university experience is a great one.
There are some useful packing lists online, these may be worth using to ensure you’ve got everything, because we always end up forgetting something! These lists might contain things you may not have even thought about bringing with you, so definitely take a look. Try to start organising your belongings about a week before moving, though this does depend on your schedule, as long as you don’t leave it to the very last day you should be fine. Remember, you’re basically moving your entire life; this isn’t just packing for a holiday. Try to think about things you use every single day because they’ll be such a regular part of your daily routine that you might not even think about packing them.
Local area research
Now that your accommodation is sorted, start doing research on the surrounding areas. Like, where is the nearest supermarket, shops, post office, bus stop, train station and other important places you may need during your time at uni. Check out the nearest clubs and restaurants, and find activities you and your new friends can do to get to know each other. Also, let’s not forget the important things like, your local GP and hospital, ensuring you know where these are (and signing up at your GP at uni) will save you the trouble from having to do it during an emergency. This way, you’ll have one less thing to worry about.
Depending on where you’re living, you may find that your accommodation has set up a Facebook page where you can all meet and talk prior to move in day. Or perhaps you can ask your landlord to give you the names of the people you’ll be living with so you can add them on social media, this could put your mind at ease as it can be quite terrifying to move in with people you know absolutely nothing about.
The same applies here. Chances are your course will have a Facebook page for you to join where you can meet and talk with your future course mates. Therefore, on the first day of uni, you’ll already have friends to sit with! Look out for groups like ‘[Your University], [Your Course], [Year]’ on Facebook, this is also the case for Freshers groups, so get searching!
Be sure you’re prepared for the start of your university life by checking your reading list and starting on it over the summer, it’ll help you in feeling confident at the start of your course. This may benefit you greatly if you’re feeling nervous about not being able to handle university, so easing yourself in by getting a head start could work out well for you.
Make sure your Student Finance is in order and you know when your payments will take place, this way you’ll know exactly what you have and what you need to pay off. Even if it may not necessarily be fun, it’ll keep your mind at ease and allow you to enjoy yourself a bit more without a money worry in the back of your mind. If you work out that finances may not be as high as you’d like, especially towards the end of the year, you may consider looking into part-time jobs or taking on some paid roles within your uni.
Have a birthday coming up? Or out University supply shopping? Then be sure to ask for cookbooks with easy recipes as this will be a lifesaver when you get sick of eating takeaways (which will happen, eventually). As long as you know how to cook the basics like rice, pasta and chicken, you can easily build up on it. So, start practising now, plus when you visit home you can surprise your parents by putting dinner on the table for once!
If you have a list of things you need to buy, whether that is stationary or kitchenware, try to get it done over a couple of months or weeks rather than leaving it all for the last day (yes, we are looking at you). That way you have a lot more time to think up things you might have forgotten, and who doesn’t like shopping, anyway? Grab some bits to make your university experience feel a bit more like home and if you aren’t sure what to get, check out our interiors guide.
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