Equipping your kids for university - The Essentials Guide

20 March 2020

Your child is about to go off into the big wide world starting their new adventure at university, and undoubtedly as a parent or guardian you are going to be a bit anxious. However, there are ways you can prepare for this next stage in both your lives to make it easier. Here are a few tips for you to consider, of course these won’t work for everyone but it may be a good starting point:

Application Process

The application process can be daunting, but the best way to approach this is to have the deadlines noted in your diary but think strategically about the best time to approach the questions such as, “How are you getting on with your application?” “Is the Student Finance process going okay?” Maybe set some time aside to discuss it together, or mention it during dinner in a relaxed setting. It also helps to do some research yourself if you are not too sure about the Student Finance process for example, so when they do come and ask for help you already know the best way to approach it.

Open Days

When it comes to attending Open Days, let them take the lead. It’s important that your child attends all of the sessions they would like to so that they can leave feeling like they’ve found out all of the information they were looking for. Of course you can do some research as well and if suitable while they attend one discussion you could attend another. Especially if there are parent focused sessions such as the ‘wellbeing parent and supporters’ session hosted at the University of Warwick Open Days.

Teach them the basics (or offer a refresh session)

If they do not know already, it is great to run through the basic skills of cooking, cleaning, washing and ironing. Discovering simple and healthy recipes in the comfort of their own home will also set them up perfectly for when they arrive at university and have to cook for themselves. Before you know it, they could be the next food connoisseur such as our BSc Accounting & Finance student Milica “I cooked for the first time when I was a fresher and by the summer vacation I became famous among other students for my specialities.”

Create a list of essential items that they willCooking need when they first arrive on campus

Work with them on producing a list of essential items to have ready for when they move into their first year accommodation. This will definitely help ease any stresses you both may have when you first arrive on campus for moving in day. BSc International Management student, Anaïs, advises “…from a practical perspective you should think about the essential items you will require on a day-to-day basis which will include basic necessities like clothes, toiletries, stationery and books. There are a lot of other items that you can buy when you arrive at the University of Warwick such as cutlery/kitchen items and bed linen, particularly for international students travelling to the UK, as items will take up a lot of room in your suitcase.” With Cannon Park shopping centre just around the corner from the University of Warwick and an on-campus health centre and grocery store, you have a range of shops available if there are any last minute panics.

BudgetingStudents talking

Share tips on how to budget and plan ahead. It is a good idea to discuss what they are expected to pay for and what you may be able to support them with whilst they are at university. Don’t forget there are lots of discounts available for students. It’s a good idea for students to register for a student discount card as well as making the most of discounted train travel with a railcard, with Coventry and Royal Leamington Spa train station not far from the university you have direct links to London and Birmingham – perfect for exploring, especially if this is the first time you are in the UK.

Discuss study routines and how best to manage workloads

Recommend that they start to think of a study routine, and make sure they include time for socialising and participating in sports clubs or societies. This will help them manage their time and work out what works best for them study wise. As BSc Accounting & Management alumnus, Henry, said “it’s natural to feel homesick, but there are plenty of things you can do at university to occupy your time. Apart from your degree, you can join clubs and societies, get involved in volunteering, or get a part-time job. With more than 250 societies and more than 65 sports clubs at Warwick, there’s something for everyone.”

Keeping in contact

It is important that you are both on the same page when it comes to keeping in touch. Discuss when and how often you call or skype each other. You will know best what suits your family situation, but do not be too downhearted if they do not talk to you everyday as they are settling in their new university life and finding their independence!

Our Recruitment Team are here to help you if you do have any more questions. You can contact them via email: wbsugenquiries@wbs.ac.uk or phone: +44 (0)24 7615 1111

You can also download our Undergraduate brochure to find out more about the courses on offer at Warwick Business School.