What are some challenges when you go to a university far from home?

I don’t know how ‘ far from home ‘ you are going to go or want to study, but I also went to study far from home.For me that was lead, while I lived in a village next to Arnhem. That was in 2008. I was 19 years old and my mother didn’t think I was going to study in the Randstad: “The mentality there is much harder than what we are accustomed to.”

I found it so doodeng.A week before the academic year started, I cried with the stress. Almost I had registered at a uni closer house. Luckily I continued. My challenges may be a bit dated, but maybe you have some of it.

These were they:

  1. I had to be at rooms. If I were going to the uni by public transport from home I was over 2 hours on the way.

Fortunately, at the time of the Leiden student housing, there was a rule that students who would be more than 1.5 hours on the road were given priority in a room. Because of this I had a room in Leiden within two months.

It was the first time I lived on myself.I then still believed that Tzatziki was a salad and ate a pot as a regular dinner.

  • I was one of the few who lived in rooms. I was expecting several fellow students to live in rooms as well.
  • Nothing was less true. Many students came from the neighbourhood of Leiden, knew each other from high school or via and travelled together to and from the uni.

    Especially the first year I felt somewhat lonely.My roommates were older and one worked even though. In my studies there was another girl who was in the same boat as me. She came all the way from Limburg. I made the mistake of saying that I found her ‘ soft g ‘ adorable. Our fledgling friendship was immediately over.

    By the second year, more and more fellow students were living in rooms and became more sociatic.

  • I constantly stray. It was still for the smartphone era.
  • What I did was view the route on the Internet and with a note make note of the route. On the way I asked passersby if I was still on the right road.

    Sometimes I went by bus, but the buses did not have any screens that indicated the next stop.So I asked the bus driver or fellow passengers if she could give a call. Often enough I still got out wrong. I have seen so much of Leiden and because of that I learned to know the city better.

    What I can give you as a tip: keep Googlemaps at hand, bike a lot and explore the city in your free time.Often you really walk against nice bars, shops and cafes.

    Do you have an appointment in a neighbourhood you haven’t been to before?Cycle the route in your spare time. Believe me, traffic situations can be different than you are used to compared to your current place of residence. I’ve been almost a ticket, because I seemingly cycled ghost. The agent could not tell me how to cycle, so I was allowed to drive.

  • Make friends. As I mentioned before, most fellow students came from the surroundings of Leiden.
  • As a result, they talked with their own friends who still knew them from high school.

    I was the only one of my VWO education to study in Leiden.In addition, I was not in a student association and the people in Leiden could clearly notice that I was not from here because of my Arnhemse accent.

    Seemingly sounded ‘ have ‘ out of my mouth As ‘ Hebban ‘.Really got a lot to hear. And my ‘ Ajuus ‘ farewell greeting was also a real no go.

    My tip: Go to places as much as possible to meet new people.Go to the activities of your study association and your uni, see what’s to do in the city, volunteer work… step really out of your comfort zone. I followed a course at a student association with a joint dinner, I went to a classic play on the uni and I was a volunteer at the library. Really do your best to meet new people.

  • My old social life was also far away. My friends all went to study in Nijmegen.
  • And just like my Leiden fellow students, they all traveled together to the uni and were speaking after the lectures. Afterwards I heard the stories.

    I was used to seeing my friends every day, but now I had to bother to talk to them.Especially in the beginning I missed them very much, but when I started to build a social life in Leiden it became less and more.

    I have to say that my challenges really took place especially in the first year.Then I knew the city on my thumb, I had nice friends and lived there for five years with great pleasure. Last I walked through Leiden again and I got flashbacks to all the cool stuff I’ve been doing there.

    Looking back, I have learnt so much from these challenges.Because of the new, sometimes stressful situations, I had to be creative in finding solutions. I still use those solutions when I am abroad or live in a new city. In my one on the path in an unknown city? No problem!

    Oh, and before I went to study I found people stepping down Doodeng.I got over this very quickly in Leiden.

    Best of luck with your study.It’s going to be a fun time where you’ll remember with a lot of nostalgia. Really!

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