My top tips for settling in at uni
Wondering what’s next after you've accepted your place at UCLan? Take a look at my useful tips and advice for settling in at uni.
1. Dive in to student life
Don’t be afraid! If you’re nervous about meeting new people, you are not the only one. Believe it or not, almost every first-year student is in the same boat. This might sound even more daunting if you are studying in the UK as an international student.
The remedy lies in putting yourself out there. Step out of your comfort zone and reach out to others. It certainly takes time to become friendly and be comfortable with people you have never met before. You’ll have a lot of opportunities to meet people in your lecture halls and in study groups. Moreover, The Students’ Union has over 70 different societies providing a perfect way of meeting people who share similar hobbies to you.
2. Register with a GP surgery
A task that I’d recommend doing when you first start university is to register with a local GP. By registering with a local doctor’s surgery, you’ll have access to the health care you need, whenever you need it. The process is pretty straightforward, and it can be completed either online or in person at the GP’s office, depending on the practice. UCLan has its own on-campus Medical Centre located in Foster Building.
3. Take part in Welcome Week
If you love socialising, Welcome Week is one of the things you might be most excited about; it helps to ‘break the ice’ between new students. A typical Freshers’ Week or Welcome Week might include activities such as Comedy Nights, Drag Karaoke, Film Night and Hip Hop Ping Pong to name a few. You don’t have to drink to fit in as the activities are not centred around alcohol. By taking part in activities that you enjoy, you are more likely to encounter like-minded people that might become your friends for life.
A variety of activities included in UCLan’s Welcome Week help new students adjust to life away from home.
4. Make your room feel like home
Moving out of your childhood bedroom might feel quite strange and you may experience home sickness. There are ways to make your new bedroom at university feel like home by customising it; for example you could bring your bed linen and decorate the walls with photos and posters. If you have space, you could even bringing some small furniture items from your old room. This can help your new bedroom feel more familiar and homely.
5. Manage your finances
Learning to handle your money is a significant part of university life. If you don’t create a manageable budget and keep track of your finances you could run out of money for food, rent and socialising.
Fortunately, there are numerous strategies to avoid this:
- You could work part-time whilst studying. Take a look at UCLan’s blog on part-time work.
- Make a spending plan and plot how you are going to spend your money
- Work out how much you require for your living expenses and how much could have leftover for spending
- Shop at budget-friendly supermarkets like Aldi and Lild or even the market in Preston
If you want more tips on managing your finances, take a look at UCLan's budgeting guide.