Whether you are starting university for the first time, or coming back for another degree, it can be both an exciting but nerve-wracking experience! As your Students’ Union Adviser, I’ve put together my top tips for you – want to talk anything through or simply have somebody to sit and listen, please don’t hesitate to book an appointment with me.
1. Get connected
Welcome week is the best time to meet new people and have fun. But if you don’t make friends immediately, don’t worry as you will have plenty of opportunities throughout the course. ARU Students’ Union organises events, activities, theatre trips and projects throughout the year and this will give you an opportunity to meet new people and enjoy yourself – got ideas for what we can help you run? Let us know.
2. Study hard
During the first few weeks, it might be overwhelming to go through all of the course materials and handbooks. But don’t worry, as things will settle down and you will be able to get yourself organised and understand things better. It might be a good idea to buddy up with your course mates so that you can support each other. For those who struggle with English as a language and Academic Writing, there are Academic Mentors at University who will be very happy to help and support you. So don’t panic and reach out for help whenever you need.
3. Keep an eye on the time
This is definitely an exciting time for you and it would seem like you have plenty of things to do. So getting yourself organised as early as possible will give you the opportunity to experience everything without feeling too stressed. Use a calendar and a checklist so that you can tick off the tasks that you have completed. Prioritise your activities and daily tasks so that you don’t miss out on the most important ones.
4. Look out for number 1 (you!)
With everything that is going on during your academic term, it is very important that you make time to take care of yourself. Make sure to reward yourself as often as possible so that you can do things that you enjoy. Also it is very important to get plenty of rest as you will need a lot of energy to get you through all your tasks during the day, particularly for those commuting in – it can be exhausting!
5. Get stuck in
University could be a lonely place for some of you, so please make sure to get involved with your groupss and networks. We presently have 6 Network Liberation Groups (LGBT+, Disabled students, BME, Parents & Carers, Women’s and International) that you could help set up so if you identify yourself with any of these groups please make sure to join in and engage in peer to peer support. Also if you wish to create your own project group, you can do so and start engaging with students who have similar interests to you.
6. Ask for help
The Students’ Union along with the University provides many support services for students such as Advice, Wellbeing, Welfare, Academic Support etc. So please feel free to use these services. There is also guidance available on careers for example preparing your CV and facing interviews so if this sounds helpful, pop down to the icentre and they can help you make an employability appointment. At ARU London you are never on your own!
If you require more information on how to access these services please contact the iCentre or the Student Union
Good luck! We are really excited to meet you – make sure you pop in and say hello – join our facebook group and follow us on Instagram!