Top Tips for Students Starting University

16 September 2019

Are you joining us to start your degree in September? In preparation for your arrival, we asked BSc International Management student Anaïs to write about some of the key items to bring and things to consider before arriving on campus.

Starting university will most likely be your first experience of living away from home, or if you are an international student, it may be your first experience of living abroad. Therefore, there are certain things you should consider as your prepare for university life. From a practical perspective you should think about the essential items you will require on a day-to-day basis as a student which will include basic necessities like clothes, toiletries, stationary and books. Whilst living on or off campus it is important that you feel comfortable in your new home as the more comfortable you feel the less homesick you will feel. I decided to bring a few items with me to personalise my new accommodation such as photos of friends and family, candles, fairy lights and posters.

If you are international student there are a few more things that you need to think when it comes to living in the UK such as opening up a UK bank account. It is a good idea to exchange some money before you arrive so you do not need to worry as much about paying for things when you first arrive on campus. There are two banks on campus, a Barclays and a Santander, but you can also go into Coventry or Royal Leamington Spa where other banks are located.

The UK weather can also be quite unpredictable so it is advisable to bring some warm clothing with you, and purchase an umbrella to save you from the rain (it doesn’t always rain, don’t worry!). Along with your day-to-day clothes, it is also a good idea to bring a few smarter pieces of clothing to wear during career events, conferences and corporate visits to make sure you make a good impression with potential future employers. Have a think about different scenarios that you may encounter whilst at university and pack clothing that you could wear to each of those scenarios. For example, at WBS they have an employer careers fair each year, which is the perfect opportunity to talk to a range of employers and get yourself noticed.

There are a lot of items that you can buy when you arrive at university such as toiletries, stationary, cutlery, kitchen items and bed linen, and if you are travelling from abroad it is better to buy these items in the UK as they will take up a lot of room in your suitcase. The University of Warwick is located very near to Coventry city centre which is easily accessible by bus, and in the centre of Coventry is a large Ikea store, Argos, Primark and Wilko's which are the perfect shops for all of your university essentials. I would recommend bringing spare chargers for your laptop and mobile phone, and if you are travelling from abroad you will need to check if an adaptor is required. I also purchased a weekly planner which I have found really useful to help me visualise my schedule and plan out my lectures, classes, societies, sports activities, study and social time. A large part of university life is building your organisational skills. I would also recommend meal planning to avoid over spending on food, if you can start this in your first year, then budgeting will be a lot easier throughout your time at Warwick.

When you first start university you need to come mentally prepared as you will be entering a completely new environment and you will feel a mixture of emotions. It is important you come with a positive mindset, and are willing to step outside of your comfort zone when it comes to meeting new people. Starting university can be an overwhelming experience, but if you stay open minded and make the most of every opportunity to engage in social activities you will make friends very quickly, and just remember everyone is in the same boat as you. Throughout your studies show your energy and motivation by raising your hand in lectures and seminars, and don’t be afraid to ask questions as this is the best way to learn. Immerse yourself in university life and make the most of the amazing variety of sports and societies available on campus by exploring new hobbies. Most importantly don’t forget to enjoy yourself, as times goes very quickly and you will be graduating before you know it.

We are here to support and motivate every student to unlock their full potential, find out more about WBS by downloading our Undergraduate brochure.