Worried about starting university?
In a few months’ time, when exams are done and all that’s left to think about is the rather huge life event of starting university, one overcoming emotion can be of worry. I certainly felt like this, so in this blog I’ll be talking you through some worries I had, and how things have turned out, hopefully to provide some reassurance to any university newcomers!
Worry 1: How will I make friends?
When coming from an area that you grew up in and consequently have had friends for a good few years (or in my case, since primary school!) it can be difficult to grasp how on earth you’ll be able to go through the ‘making friends from scratch’ phase all over again. This was a major worry of mine. I’m not particularly shy, but there’s always that nagging voice saying that people may not warm to you (etc etc..). Little did I know that there was nothing to worry about! I made great friends with flatmates, course mates and others I met through various friends. It is also certainly not true that if you don’t get on too well with course mates that you’ll be left with nobody. University is a HUGE place, full of people within societies, volunteering schemes, jobs and so much more!
Worry 2: How will I cope with the step up in workload?
There’s always that worry that you’re stepping up to degree level, meaning things are going to get tougher. I worried about this as my time to come to Warwick grew nearer, and started doubting my ability. What is vital, though, is to remember that you got into university for a reason! University courses are not meant to catch you out, but to develop not only your knowledge of the subject but skills and experience! In terms of my course, I have just felt that everything is taught and studied in a much greater depth than A levels, and while some modules are challenging, I have not yet felt completely lost.
Worry 3: How will I afford everything?
It’s a given- university life is expensive. This was a worry of mine, as I have never had to do food shopping or laundry before, and did not know how much I would end up spending, on top of socialising and everything else. I think the answer to this is to think smart. I share my laundry loads with a flatmate sometimes, as well as items such as milk. This way, only of us pays for it each time. In terms of food shopping, it is good to bulk buy items such as pasta, to buy reduced items and freeze them, and perhaps buy less branded items. The difference in price can really make a difference. There’s also the chance of getting a job, if extra money is required, many of which are offered by the university.
Worry 4: What if I get homesick?
This worry definitely crossed my mind, as I am very close with my family. It has definitely not been as bad as I thought it would be! I usually facetime my parents once a week, meaning that I can catch up on what’s been happening at home. Also, there is always the option to visit home on a weekend, if things are getting tough. It’s also reassuring to know that once the holidays arrive, you get plenty of time at home!
Worry 5: What if I don’t fit in?
The answer to this one is, there is no way of ‘fitting in’! University is hugely diverse, a place to express yourself freely. This uniqueness means that regardless of who you are, your fashion sense, your hobbies, your likes and dislikes- you won’t be judged! Many even see university as a time to truly express who they are, if they haven’t felt confident enough to previously.
I hope that this blog has offered some level of reassurance to anyone worrying about starting university. Just remember, most worries appear 10 times worse in your head. The best thing is to be prepared for any situation that may occur, and know that it is a large change, but every first year probably feels the same.