Moving to university might be the first time you have lived away from home or experiencing independent living. Adjusting to life away from friends and family (and maybe even a pet!) can be difficult and settling into a new place can be overwhelming. Here at buddy(su), our volunteers can support you in your first few months at UEA. Whether you’ve moved an hour from home or halfway around the world – here are some tips to help you manage feelings of homesickness:
Find your campus community:
University is full of opportunities to socialise and get involved with something new. At UEA, we have over 300 clubs and societies, each representing a community of students who have a shared interest, hobby, religion or country. Join anything that you think could be interesting, you can always drop them later if you don’t enjoy it or get too busy.
Getting to know your surroundings in the first few weeks can be really benefical. Make sure you explore campus and the city centre - you might even find a new favourite spot that makes you feel at home!
Bring something from home:
Being able to call UEA home shouldn’t come at the cost of forgetting somewhere else. Make your university accommodation feel more like home by bringing in photos, favorite items or foods that mean something special to you.
Talking and sharing experiences with your flatmates and friends at UEA is also important. Cooking a meal for your house or celebrating a festival or holiday together can make you feel at home, even if you are miles away.
Sign up for a buddy:
buddy(su) volunteers have all experienced their first year of study, each having a unique perspective on what it is like. Your buddy will be trained to listen and remain confidential if you want to talk about feeling homesick or how to make the most of your time at UEA.
They can also support you in finding clubs or societies that might interest you and find other students with similar interests.
Talk to someone:
Settling into university can be difficult and not feeling at home straight away is OK. Speaking to someone can often ease feelings of homesickness and if you need further support after speaking to your buddy – you can get in touch with our Advice Centre. Located by the entrance of Union House, you can drop in or make an appointment to speak to one of our trained advisors. You can also call them on 01603 593463.
It's important to note homesickness can happen any time at university and you can get support via our Advice Centre here.