My top 5 tips for settling in at Falmouth

10 June 2024

Falmouth Town Photo Credit Lee Stephens
Falmouth Town Photo Credit Lee Stephens
Credit: Lee Stephens
Type: Text
Category: Student finances

This article was written by Dance & Choreography BA(Hons) student Lucy.

1. Be prepared for move-in weekend.

Over the summer before my first year, I made a checklist for myself of the things I needed to take with me. Going out to choose my own things made me excited about independent living at university. Before coming to Falmouth, when enrolling online there is more information given to you, so do keep checking your emails! When moving in, my Mum was able to help me. We got to my accommodation early and we were able to park the car just outside the block. Once I'd unpacked, it was helpful to do my first big food shop whilst having the car as well. It did feel strange after she'd left, but I was then able to get to know my flatmates a bit more. We sat in the common room for hours on the first night chatting away!

2. Take opportunities to meet new people.

My biggest fear before coming to university was whether I would get on with the people I would meet. There are lots of Facebook groups and group chats online that get made, which help you feel a bit more connected to other students coming. During Welcome Week, no matter what you enjoy doing, there is an event for you! At the Freshers' Fayre, all the clubs, sports and societies are there for you to join, whether you'd like to meet other students that do your favourite hobby or you just want to try something new. There was also a BBQ - it was a good chance to get chatting with other new first-years in a chilled setting. The amount of new people I have met this year is also something that would have intimidated me before, but the fact that Falmouth is a creative arts university means that you already have something in common with the other students. In addition, being in Cornwall, the majority of people coming to the university are from quite a distance away. There are always going to be some people you get on with more than others, but there are so many different places and opportunities to meet different people, that you will find those that you click with. This also really helps with those feelings of homesickness and loneliness that are inevitable. 

3. Explore what the area has to offer.

Coming from a suburban area an hour from London, it’s safe to say that Falmouth is very different from my hometown. The first few weeks can be very overwhelming, so I enjoyed having some downtime to myself exploring the local area. The accommodation I am in, The Sidings, is right next to the train station and bus stop, so getting around is really easy. I liked looking around the independent shops that are unique to Cornwall. I also found the bakery, Lawrence’s, which is now my favourite place to go for a sweet treat. There are also regular markets and different types of festivals throughout the year. The beaches are a huge part of what people love about Falmouth. In September, it’s generally still good weather. It was still just about warm enough to swim in the sea if you're brave enough! The Gylly Beach Cafe, as well as good food, does excellent hot chocolates if you need to warm up afterwards. 

4. Get familiarised with the campus.

There are so many facilities on-campus. One of my worries was that I would get lost on-campus, but everywhere is signposted on campus. During Welcome Week, course inductions are a good opportunity to meet lecturers, who showed us around our department. Despite visiting the university on an Open Day, I also found it useful to look around as an official student! As an AMATA student, it can feel like I stick to our corner of the Penryn Campus, but places like the Italian Gardens and Koofi are good chill-out spots that I wish I would go to more. It’s also good to check out the library. The main desk, called The Compass, is the centre for any questions you may have during your time at university.

5. Embrace the change!

Coming to university really is a big adjustment. During the first study block, it is natural to feel quite out-of-place, but over time you find a routine that works for you, which helps you feel more settled. Whilst you come to university primarily to study, you gain so many life skills and memories along the way. It really is such a unique experience you don’t get at any other time in your life!

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