A Guide to University Life: Adjusting, Thriving, and Learning

Adjusting to University Life

Starting university can be a daunting process. After all, you are leaving behind the close support of friends and family and starting a new chapter in your educational, personal, and professional life. Especially if it is your first time leaving home, you might find yourself feeling homesick. You might have imagined university life to be an exciting experience where you make lots of new friends and have an incredible social life. For some people that happens right away, but for others it can take some time, but regardless there will be times that you feel lonely.

Feelings of loneliness and homesickness will usually lessen over time but can make it difficult for you to engage in university life.

This is a period of change and readjustment. You will be getting use to a new lifestyle, new study demands, and newly found independence.

Here are some tips to help you adjust to these changes:

  • Start a conversation. It may seem difficult to make the first move, but most likely, the other person will be happy to have a conversation. Chances are, they may be going through the same challenges you are.
  • Join clubs and societies to socialize with people who have common interests. It is easier to talk to someone when you are doing an activity together and there is less pressure to make an impression.
  • Get professional help. If the problem persists and you are experiencing distress, it may be helpful to talk to a counsellor and receive professional help.

Making the Most Out of University Life

unversity life
  • Embrace learning. It’s easy to become distracted by all the things that come with university life. But you have to remember that the reason you are there in the first place is to learn. This is an opportunity for you to explore the subject you are interested in. Attend seminars by experts, take new courses, and take advantage of all the learning resources you have access to.
  • Have some fun. Whatever your idea of fun might be, go out and do it. Studies are important but it is also necessary to occasionally give yourself a break and have some fun. It can also help you destress and relax.
  • Make new friends. In university, you are in contact with a lot of new people from a lot of different places. Learning and sharing experiences with each other will help you become a more well-rounded person and equip you with essential skills.
  • Join a society. Societies will introduce you to people from different programs with similar interests. Not to mention the social life societies offer. And if you can’t find a society you like, you can always start your own!
  • Get out of your comfort zone. Study abroad, do an internship, or spend some time working in the industry. This will not only allow you to acquire a skillset, but will also boost your confidence.
  • Get to know yourself. Take advantage of the wide array of opportunities you have offered to you to find out what you like or dislike and what your passions may be.

Lessons from Hostel Life:


Lesson #1

You have to leave behind you habits of being picky and fussy and just learn to survive.

Experienced Hostelite
unversity life

By entering hostel life, you have left your comfort zone, and now its time to adapt. Get use to eating mess food doused in oil, vegetables you can no longer recognize, and lots of beans and lentils. You eventually learn to eat anything that is edible and take full advantage of opportunities to score free food. Not to mention the shared bathrooms. Those might just be the single most difficult part of hostel life, but hey, what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger right?

Lesson #2

You learn to live with all sorts of people.

Experienced Hostelite

When you get put in a hostel with hundreds of other students of various backgrounds, habits, and personalities, you quickly learn that there are other people in the world and they may not think, talk, or live like you. You build tolerance and acceptance for those differences.

Lesson #3

You build lasting friendships.

Experienced Hostelite

Although friends will come and go in hostel life, the ones that stick around are people that have seen you at your best and worse and accept you for who you are despite your imperfections. These friendships are meant to last.

Lesson #4

You learn to look after yourself.

Experienced Hostelite
unversity life

Your family is no longer by your side to care for you all the time, so you learn to take care of yourself. You toughen up, and learn to deal with various situations and challenges.

Lesson #5

You learn to share…EVERYTHING.

Experienced Hostelite

If you are someone who is very protective their personal space and belongings, you are going to have to get a little less protective. When you are living in a small shared space, you have to come to terms with your property becoming shared property.

Lesson #6

You learn the importance of managing your money and collecting loans.

Experienced Hostelite
unversity life

When you are living with your parents, you don’t have to think much about managing money. However, when you are on your own, you are responsible for taking care of your expenses. You learn the value of money, the importance of budgeting, and that you can’t just lend money to friends all the time.

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