Coming to university and getting into studying mode after summer or a gap year may not seem like the most appealing prospect. If you’ve been travelling for a significant period, heading to uni in the rainy Midlands may seem particularly depressing. Maybe you’re an international student and the quaint surrounding countryside and slightly grubby city of Coventry has been a blow to your expectations of an exciting new life in the UK.
It doesn’t have to be all doom and gloom; uni can be a particularly exciting time packed with new experiences that will be nothing like anything you’ve done previously. Living on your own and sharing accommodation with friends (who you probably won’t know until you arrive) for a more permanent amount of time is such a different experience and so much fun. You may think the fun ends when uni begins, but for much of first year it can feel like some kind of extended summer camp!
There is something thrilling about gaining this new form of independence. Moving into a new place and making it your own, meeting so many people and forming new friendships, and discovering all the best it has to offer goes hand in hand with learning in a lecture theatre.
Being on a diverse campus with access to so many opportunities, ranging from volunteering to part time work will take some time to get used to and fully find your feet. Being a tourist and travelling is great, but learning to actually settle in and live somewhere totally different is in itself challenging in the best way.
Besides, if the boredom is getting the better of you, rest assured that first year will likely leave you with plenty of time to travel and step outside your comfort zone. Society tours, RAG expeditions and Warwick run volunteering abroad trips are just a few of the in house ways you can travel.
The Warwick campus is ideally located in the middle of the country and serves as the perfect base from which to explore the rest of the UK and further afield. If you take the plunge and truly embrace everything Warwick has to offer, there is little chance you will be bored or missing your summer of freedom anywhere near as much as you expect.
For those of you walking into moving day in complete fear of how your university experiences will live up to your gap year, fear not. Anyone with the travel itch, you’ve come to the right place! Even though it might seem daunting, the next three (or more!) years of your life will not trap you on campus, I promise you that.
Warwick University is by far one of the most convenient places to travel from in the UK. Whether you just want to explore England, or jump across the pond to mainland Europe and beyond, the opportunities to escape lectures and see the world are endless.
One of my top tips for those of you starting university today would be to be open minded about exploring beyond campus. We are fortunate enough to have such a large network to explore! Even going clubbing in Leamington or Coventry can seem like a huge adventure after a few fish bowls.
Clubbing aside, Warwick has incredible opportunities for you to go abroad. In your third year, you could have the chance to study abroad in dozens of different locations. From Australia to the Americas, you can experience completely different cultures just from filling out some forms.
If you’re wondering how your summer will live up to the never-ending one you just experienced waiting for your results, fear not. Society tours and volunteering expeditions offer unforgettable moments.
Even if you are walking into this year not knowing anyone, you will definitely find friends who have the travelling bug! Society tours are reasonably priced and will allow you and your new friends to explore the world together. You can even raise money for charities whilst you’re at it!
If you ever do get a bit stir crazy on campus, there is nothing to worry about. Coventry station provides super quick access to London (you can pay a bit more to take the really nice Virgin Trains to Euston, all in under an hour) or Birmingham. From there, the world is your oyster.
Birmingham Airport has plenty of budget flight destinations for you to explore, and is just half an hour away by train. Before you know it, you and your new friends will be excitedly booking last minute flights abroad, preparing for your next big life events.
As daunting as it may seem now, the next few weeks will provide you with unique opportunities and experiences that you might not have had before. That, in itself, could in fact be your next remarkable adventure…