Leaving home is exciting, especially if you are moving to a new country. There are so many places to explore and people to meet, as well as things to learn and experience on your course. However, this is also a big life change; for some, it may be your first time living away from your parents or living in a foreign country. It is completely natural to feel homesick, so don’t panic.
If you do start to feel overwhelmed, there are a few different things you can to do to improve your mood. We’ve put together a few tips to help you feel more at home in your new city.
If your mind is occupied with other things, it has less time to think about home. It’s that simple. It is also a great excuse to get out and explore your new city. Newcastle has so much going on, from theatre and exhibitions to concerts and sports. You can find out about a lot of these events here and Northumbria University’s website also offers a rough guide to the city and blog posts about local food and drink, culture and day trips, which you can find here.
Getting involved in student life is a great way to cheer you up if you feel homesick. Societies and clubs allow you to explore your interests, make friends who share those interests and help you to feel like you’re part of a community. The Northumbria University Student Union has over 90 different groups, from Chess Society to Model United Nations, meaning you will probably find at least one that suits you.
Even though you may feel lonely at times, the other people on your course are likely to be in the same position. Try starting a conversation with someone in your tutor group or suggesting activities you could do together. Friends are a huge part of feeling at home and having a good time at university, so making a few on your course will help you feel less isolated. And if you do have a bad day, you’ll know someone who understands exactly what you’re going through.
Speaking to your friends or family on the phone can make you miss them more but it’s important to keep in touch. The key? Don’t talk too often. Limit yourself to a few calls a week or you may start to depend too much on this rather than enjoying the Northumbria University experience.
University accommodation can be a little plain. Adding personal touches such as photographs, your own bedsheets and even a plant can help your room feel more personal. You want it to be somewhere you’re happy to come back to after a long day at university and that offers you comfort. You can find tips for decorating here and fun and find affordable bedding online and at many shops on the high street.
If you start to get very low and can’t cope with your studies and being away from home, ask for help. It is totally normal to miss your family and the familiar faces of your friends, especially if you’re studying abroad. Your personal tutor will understand and be able to help and offer comfort, but you have to ask. Northumbria University also offers several resources to help you adjust to studying there, including international student support and counselling and mental health support.
If you want more information about studying at Northumbria University Pathway, visit our website.