By Molly Doyle
BACK TO UNI
Given the current COVID pandemic, coming to University as a first year or as a returning student can be stressful. This article seeks to give you some tips on your move to your term time address and how to effectively prepare for the start of university lessons.
The most important thing to bear in mind is your obligation to keep yourself and others safe. Before moving, check regulations for your location and for the location you will be moving to. Abide to any lockdown by postponing the move until restrictions are lifted and allow for an easy move into your new residence. As always, when out and about wear a mask and wash your hands hands regularly. I also suggest keeping a bottle of hand sanitizer on your person, for when a cleaning station is not available, and to always wash your mask after every use.
When you can move, organisation and communication are essential to assure a smooth move. Let your parents/ guardians know when and where you are moving, look up the best route to the new accommodation and discuss how you will get there. If you are moving into halls, communicate with the accommodation the estimated time you will be moving in. Halls of residence sometimes have time slots you can book, to avoid having to share narrow spaces if multiple households are moving in at the same time.
PREPARING FOR UNI
Having moved to your new accommodation, you will most likely have time before Uni starts to get settled and prepare for the academic term. Here are some tips to help get you started:
Getting ahead: Reading ahead for a subject is fine, but it can be easy to get lost in materials without guidance. Instead of reading ahead, try reviewing essay structure and re-familiarize yourself with referencing. By solidifying these skills you’ll be able to focus more on what content you produce and write high quality essays. However, don’t forget to prepare for the first week of seminars and workshops.
Societies: Whether you’re a fresher or a returning student, it’s still a good idea to join societies and get involved as much as you can. Whether it’s to enhance your skills and employability, or to network, societies are sure to provide you with opportunities that will aid you throughout the next academic year.
Personal Tutors: Once you’ve returned, make sure to get in touch with your personal tutor and update them of what you’ve been up to over summer. Personal tutors are one of the most valuable resources available at university. By updating them, you let them keep track of your progress and help you deal with situations that may have arisen since you last spoke.
Voting: Another important thing to do is registering your voting address, as well as updating any other important address (For instance with your bank, university’s registry, council, etc.).
Uni’s changes: Lastly, before classes and lectures start, check your universities policies and guidelines for dealing with COVID-19. Some universities are delivering online content only for the first semester, while others have introduced precautions to allow in person teaching. If you feel uneasy or unsure it is worth checking in with your university what the new policies are.
Your mental and physical health is important. There are many things you can do to look after your wellbeing. Getting in a regular sleep schedule, eating and drinking better, light exercise, taking regular breaks and doing the things you enjoy will all help in keeping you well.