Social TransitionGetting used to a university campus, a new city or even a different country can be tough for new students, but it's good to remember that everyone can feel lost when they are in a new and unfamiliar place.
For most students, going to university is a time of great freedom and independence. Suddenly you're in charge of your own life and you have to deal with changing friendship groups, new financial demands, new social and intellectual opportunities. Finding the right balance between study and social life is very important.
Below are some of the more common issues faced by students:
- Adolescence to adulthood: If you're moving from school to university, this is an important phase of moving from adolescence to adulthood with increased responsibilities, independence and freedom.
- Increased responsibility: You are now in charge of your own learning and study, not your school teachers.
- Culture and lifestyle: Monash and indeed the city of Melbourne have a very culturally diverse population. If you are from overseas, adjusting to some of the Australian ways of doing things may be challenging. Australians tend to be quite laid back and direct.
- Friends: You may no longer be surrounded by old friends and some find yourself feeling isolated without familiar support networks - this is particularly acute for those who have moved away from home and experience homesickness. Even if you come to university knowing a lot of people already, you will meet many new friends and perhaps find your friendship groups changing.
- Finances: You may find yourself having to juggle competing financial demands, part-time work and budgeting for the first time.
- Accommodation: Dealing with housemates and landlords is another new experience for students moving out of home.
- Balance: Many students find that one of the biggest challenges is learning how to balance their academic life with the exciting opportunities outside of class, including meeting new people, joining clubs and trying new activities.
Tip: Don't just join clubs and be a passive member; go to meetings and get involved in running activities and events. Working on projects with other people is one of the best ways to establish friendships.