How to prepare for University
31 August 2022
Hello, I’m Alice! After completing an art foundation at The Bristol School of Art, I was quite sure that Falmouth was the only place I wanted to be.
My top advice on preparing for university
Get ready for a whole heap of firsts – you are about to embark on a wonderful journey. But, what do you really need to prepare for university at Falmouth?
What to bring to university
First of all, you will need some belongings – time to pack some clothes. Falmouth is wonderful in the sunshine but it can also rain, a lot. You’ll need a some university wardrobe essentials to be ready for the sun, the rain and the wind. A trusty raincoat might become your best friend as well as a jumper for that Cornish sea breeze. Also, make sure to bring some swimmers; Falmouth has some wonderful spots for a swim, castle beach is a favourite of mine. For the evenings, anything goes. Be wild and wacky or comfy and casual, Falmouth is unique in that you could go out in a silk dress or a fleece, both would be fab options – you could even try them together.
This is most likely the first time you’ve needed your own kitchenware. There are lots of things you will need, yet some items that you’ll find you never use. My university kitchen checklist includes: one saucepan, one frying pan, a baking tray, a couple of plates, a bowl, mugs and plenty of cutlery (this always goes walkabouts). One good knife, a can opener and bottle opener will also come in handy. You don’t need to buy all of these brand new, although it is a good excuse for an IKEA trip. You can find crockery in charity shops and if you ask around you might find you have family members that want to get rid of pots and pans. Try to avoid bringing anything too precious – things will get broken and mugs will be borrowed.
Cooking and keeping healthy as a student
How will you feed yourself at university? If you don't have any cooking skills, you’re about to gain some. It’s a good idea to have about five meals in your repertoire. Whether that’s beans on toast, pasta, baked potato, lasagne or curry, it’s up to you. You’ll probably find you’ll have to get quite creative between food shops. But don’t just rely on carbs, make sure to get your vegetables in every day! They’ll keep you healthy and give you some much needed energy.
Funding your student lifestyle
One of most important things when leaving home and moving to university is to have a plan for your finances. Welcome to the world of budgeting. You’ll want to focus all of your time on your course and making friends, so it’s good to have an idea of how you’ll manage your finances before you arrive.
You will now need to organise your money for rent, food and fun. You may be able to cover all of these outgoings with your Student Loan, however, if you can’t, you’ll need to either get help from family or find a part time job. There are lots of job opportunities for students looking for part time work. In fact, you can read my article about working part time while you study here.
Making friends at university
Now that the boring logistics are behind us, we can focus on the more interesting parts. You’re about to move to a wonderful town with lots to explore. You’ll meet people who might be a part of your life for many years to come and you’ll be doing all of this whilst studying something you love. How do we prepare for this?
When you come to university, it’s important to be open, optimistic and enthusiastic. Take every opportunity to hang out, you never know where you might find a friend. Living in shared housing or halls can come with built-in friendships but you won’t always find your people in your flat, so make sure you stay open to meeting other people too. The Students' Union has over 150 societies to join so this can be a great way of meeting people who share similar interests as you. When it comes to your degree and being on campus, get stuck in. Get acquainted with your tutors and the facilities and take as many inductions and workshops as you can. This is a great way to get comfortable in your environment and meet your peers.
Being kind to yourself
Now, not every day will be full of newness. There will be times when the adjustment gets a little too much and you might miss home. But fear not, those days will dissipate. Get a cup of tea and ask someone if they want one too - they might just be feeling the same way. It’s important to remember to be kind to yourself. Leaving home is a big change, so recognise when you need some quiet time or to give your home friends a call to see how they’re doing at their universities.
I wish you all the best on this new adventure, welcome to Falmouth University.
To find out what you need to do next and to seek support, visit our New Students page.