27 September 2019
As an international student, I've moved away from home to a new country - and loved it. If you're thinking of doing the same, here's my advice on managing nerves and what to do during your first days in a completely new city.
I am halfway through my course now but I still remember how tough it was when I had to decide what to do after secondary school.
My dream has always been to study abroad – therefore, since I was young, I have had English classes in order to acquire a good level of English that would enable me to reach my dream.
Everything seemed to be going well... I had met all the entry requirements, I had found a house to rent and I had prepared boxes full of clothes and things I wanted to bring with me in this new adventure. But guess what? One week before leaving, with a flight ticket already booked, I just didn’t feel ready to go abroad.
With my family completely shocked about my last-minute change of mind, I started uni in my home country instead.
Everyone who starts something new may have mixed feelings: excitement combined with nerves, happiness, amazement, uncertainty, confusion and more. However, I wasn’t feeling any of these. I was just thinking about how it would have been to study abroad and the amazing experience I was missing. If I had to follow my gut feeling and put my fears aside, I would have definitely come back to my original decision and start at the uni I actually wanted to be at: ARU in Cambridge. So this is what I did.
I re-applied to ARU and started in January of the same year. And here I am now! After almost two years I can say that it was the best decision ever.
However, when I moved to Cambridge, I did not know anyone, I had never been in the city before and I was quite stressed. I did not know quite a few of the idiomatic expressions people use and I was used to the American accent. Consequently, sometimes I could not understand everything in a conversation and I felt quite out of place and uncomfortable.
For these reasons, I do think that everyone – especially if coming from another country – would find my following advice useful.
I hope you feel a bit reassured now!
My final thought is: do not let your fears prevent you from working towards your goal and achieving your dreams.