5 Practical Things to Remember When You Start University

When you first start University, or even when you’re going into second or third year, it can be a strange time. You might feel scared about leaving home, worried about social life, or excited about living independently.

Starting this chapter in your life can be tough, but there are a few practical things to remember when you start University, or move into a new University year.

When you start University, it’s all about making the transition a lot easier for you, and understanding the practical ways that you can look out for yourself during this different time in your life.

Below, find 5 practical things to remember when you start University and experience this new time in your life

Stay connected

One of the best things to remember when you start University is to stay connected. It’s very easy in this new time in your life to feel like you have to start fresh, but it’s important to find ways to stay connected to people you love during this time in your life.

Stay connected with friends and family from home over the phone, and if there’s someone from your school who is at the same University as you, reach out to them.

It’s a great way to stay connected to home when you might be feeling homesick, and having a familiar face in a strange place is so important.

Stay safe

One of the practical things to remember when you start University is to always look after yourself first and foremost. This might mean maintaining a healthy work/life balance for your mental health, or understanding how you can stay safe on campus.

For lots of students, this will be their first time living in a new city, so don’t forget to look after yourself above everything else, and remember to stay safe in any new situations.

Don’t walk home alone at night if you can, stick with people you trust when you go out, and always trust your gut when it comes to safety and looking after yourself.

A group of friends sit on the grass looking at an iPad or notepad.
Picture credits here

Drink lots of water

I wish I had done this earlier, but carrying a water bottle with you is so important- at any time in your life. It is inconvenient and expensive to keep buying water bottles everywhere you go, not to mention unsustainable.

When you’re a student, it’s likely you’ll be busy throughout the day- and when you’re popping between lectures, or spending hours in the library, it’s so important that you’re staying hydrated. Drinking water regularly will keep you feeling fresh, especially as you start to enjoy some of University social life or find that you’re not getting as much sleep as you need.

If you decide you want to go out and drink, making sure you’re hydrated before you go to bed is also such an important rule to follow. Always stay hydrated, especially if you’ve had a drink or two.

Save money

If you’re a student, chances are you don’t have loads of money. Campus accommodation can be expensive in your first year, and suddenly spending more money on social activities can take its toll on your bank account.

My tip would be to save as much money as possible, whenever you can. It’s such a relief to still have a little money left over to spend over the summer, and you might want to have a little buffer in your bank account for moving into second or third year.

Try and find all the student discounts. Take it from someone who is no longer a student, you’ll miss the perks once you graduate.

Three jars with coins and shoots growing out of them. A hand puts a coin in the emptiest jar.
Picture credits here

Get up to date

Make sure you get up to date with everything you might need to know. Most Universities should give you talks about everything from sex education and consent, to experiencing academic issues. Make sure you’re aware of anything you might need to know during this transition time in your life.

Note down any emergency campus numbers, or find out how to alert campus security if you ever need help.

It’s unlikely you’ll ever need this information, but a great practical way to prepare University is to understand how to protect your safety, and to make sure you have all the information.

What do you think of these practical things to remember when you start University? Do you have any tips for starting University? What is your practical advice for starting University?

Let me know all your thoughts in the comments below 🙂

Happy reading x

34 thoughts

  1. Thanks for sharing practical tips in starting the university. I am still a student in a university today but in graduate school. hehe! Everything is online so.. let me just share way back my undergrad year. I am a working student to maintain my scholarship so saving money is my priority. I usually bring my own food than buying from the cafeteria. I barely had this “social life” because right after class, I need to render my time in the office. I only have few friends back then. hehe.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! Saving money is so important, and bringing your own food is such a great tip to save money, especially as a student. I’m sorry to hear that but I’m very impressed that you kept working while studying, and it’s great that you created some friendships x

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  2. I have never been to university, but I think that all these tips can easily be translated even when moving to a new city. I think that the best tip was to stay hydrated at all times, I used to have my bottle everywhere when in high school and it was such a life saver! Thanks for sharing x

    Liked by 1 person

  3. This is really great advice! Especially the one about getting up to date. I was a terrified 17 year old who was super shy when I first started Uni and I think the more advice new students can get, the better!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. What an awesome list Eleanor! You’ve outlined some fantastic points, I’ve worked in post secondary student affairs for the past 10 years and you’ve outlined exactly what most students need to remember. I think of the the things I would add to your list is to find your own way, in University there’s a lot of pressure to do or engage in certain clubs or activities and it’s important to learn what you like and what you want to do with your time – not what you think others should do! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Alex! Ah I’m so glad I hit the right points, especially as you’re an expert and I’m just speaking from experience 🙂 Yes, finding your own way is so important- you can just do your own thing, or go out with friends, or join clubs- the choice is yours x

      Like

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