For the students considering living at home during university…
For many 18 year olds university is the perfect opportunity to go out into the world on their own, to explore new things and to finally gain independence from their parents. Most of these life experiences happen when you move away from your home town to a new city away from any home comforts and familiar faces. I think this can be one of the most exhilarating prospects for new students when they begin university. However, this wasn’t the case for me.
I decided to live with my parents whilst studying at university. I was thrilled to get accepted to study at The University of Manchester because I had always wanted to study here. The thought of moving out to live in student accommodation never crossed my mind to be honest. From the beginning, my parents were amazing and said they would support me throughout my studies. Staying at home meant I had stability, support, a home cooked meal every night (almost) and it meant I could save money for the future. It was a no brainer!
It was only when I began university that I realised many students chose to move away from home and live in student accommodation. In those first few weeks, the first question people asked me would often be ‘Are you living in Halls?’ or ‘What accommodation are you in?’ When I told them I was living at home they would all respond with ‘Why?’ I found it difficult, especially during the first semester. It seemed everyone was making new friends and connections with flatmates easily and I didn’t have that. I was afraid I had made the wrong decision. A lot of my friends from school and college had moved away so my first semester was a little confusing and lonely. I was worried that I had isolated myself by living at home and I was missing out on the ‘full university experience’.
But now, going into my final semester as an undergraduate student, I am so happy that I chose to stay at home. The past two years have been amazing and, for me, living at home has produced the best results for my university work. I have grown even closer to my family and I have been able to work very hard and focus purely on my studies without many distractions; therefore I’ve gotten great results. I soon discovered that the whole going out and partying lifestyle was not for me. Saying that, I don’t think that living at home restricted me from making new friends, memories and enjoying different experiences. A big part of my university life was working as an Ambassador throughout the academic year. Since I lived at home, I also worked at the university during the summer months. I have made brilliant friends on my course and throughout the various activities and events I’ve attended. As a result, I have had a great university experience.
So, for the students out there who are thinking of living at home during their studies, I would like to advise you not to worry about not having the ‘full university experience’. Just make sure you throw yourself into university life and make the most of every opportunity that comes your way, you might just be able to get the best of both worlds!