Wednesday, 24 August 2011

Flo's Top Tips For Moving To Uni

For most people, starting university is both exciting and anxiety-ridden all at the same time, especially for those moving away from home. I mentioned in a previous post that I’ve been fortunate enough to already attend university - I’m greedy I know - and like most students, I moved away from home and into halls of residence. So having experienced university life as a live-in student in the not-so-distant past, I thought I’d offer a few tips for those soon to be in the same position.

Manage Your Money
Few things will concern you more than the issue of money during your time as a student - though hopefully one of those things will be your degree! I find it impossible to comprehend now, but I somehow managed to make £700 last me each semester - of course I had a little help in the form of a student overdraft at the start, but that soon runs out. Remember, whatever your disposable income is, it needs to pay for EVERYTHING. That includes food, books, travel costs, nights out (of which there will be plenty), clothes, etc.

Should you run out of money, DO NOT be tempted to apply for multiple overdrafts or credit cards. You will regret it later on.

Learn To Cook
Even if you only learn how to make a few simple meals, it’ll work out far cheaper and healthier in the long run. Takeaways will eat up your cash and help you gain the kind of pounds no one wants! If you have similar tastes to some of your housemates, suggest clubbing in together for food, that way you can share the cost and maybe even the cooking.

Don’t Stay In Your Room
Leaving home affects people in different ways and to varying degrees, so even if you’re finding the transition particularly difficult, resist temptation and don’t hole yourself up in your room. Going away to university should be one of the best experiences of your life, and meeting new people is a large part of that. 

Also, uni life isn’t all fun and frolics; you’ll encounter some tough times along the way and it’ll be the friends you make at uni who will be the ones to help you through those times, and very likely end up being your friends for life.

Get A TV Licence
If you don’t, expect regular occurrences of panicking whilst looking for somewhere to hide your TV when your housemate warns you there’s a TV detector van outside. It’s really not worth the hassle, plus of course it’s illegal!

Be Considerate
Always clean up after yourself. Your room is your own personal domain, but communal spaces such as the kitchen, toilets, and showers are there for everyone to use. If you’ve cooked, wash up afterwards. If you spill something (probably booze), clean it up. If the bin is full, empty it. Don’t assume that someone else will, or should, do these things for you. So if you’re expecting the cleaners to pick up the slack, don’t, because they won’t! They’ll simply clean around the mess that they find. 

Also, be considerate of your noise levels. Everyone will be working to different timetables and schedules, so regardless of what time it is, always try and keep the noise to a minimum, especially at night - don’t be tempted to serenade people’s doors with an out-of-tune rendition of Born This Way at stupid o’clock in the morning after one too many alcopops, it won’t make for an easy life!

Enjoy It!
For most people, this opportunity comes around only once, so make the most of it. Remember though, you need to work hard as well as play hard!

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