10 tips for a new international student… from a former international student

Abhishek Kumar Mishra completed his MEng in Electrical and Electronics Engineering in 2015. He now works as a research assistant for Brookings India for Energy and sustainability. Abhishek kindly took time out of his busy schedule to give us some advice for new international students at the university.

Abhishek Kumar Mishra MEng Electrical and Electronics Engineering

Travelling to a new country is very different than going to study in a new country. From my personal experience, I can assure that it doesn’t matter how prepared you feel before leaving your house there will always one or two things which will make you feel horrible. So don’t feel that way and just think you are no different than many others.

I remember when I moved to my flat on first day, I delayed my shopping trip. By the time I got to Asda all the duvet were gone, got to Primark, it was shut and with no options left I came back without an duvet. With no heating as it was still early October I slept with my laptop on under the only sheet I had. “I survived”. Being international also puts you ahead of many, you have experienced few things which others haven’t making you unique. So don’t think that you are different, YOU ARE UNIQUE.

When it comes to top 10 tips, here are mine for anyone joining university as international student:

•Never worry about asking: Brighton university staff and students are very approachable. Make the most of this opportunity to ask anything you wish to find out. From finding out a lecture room to finding a convenient store they will go an extra mile to help.
•Make friends outside your course: One piece of advice I always give to anyone I can; making friends outside your comfort zone not only allows you to explore new things but allows you to socialise and experience different opportunities. It may not be obvious but be assured that this WILL help with your career.
•Find out stores for the food you like: when you are in different country one of the many thing you miss is home food. Well, not in Brighton. Brighton has food available from around the world, be it Turkish, African or Indian. Get ingredients for your flavour and switch on your oven.
•Balance your life: This is the most important of all; Brighton is haven for nightlife, and trust me there will be times when peer pressure means studying will not be your priority. Whilst it is very important to have a good social life, do not allow it to take over the main reason you are in university for, “education and getting a degree which helps you to secure a better future”. Work hard and aim to have the right balance of education and a social life.
•Getting a part time job: Get a part time job if you can, it will not only give you some pocket money but will also help to get an experience in your CV.
•Utilize services provided by university: The university has wide range of services available for hard times. The experts there are very helpful. Please make the effort to find out about the services available and use them. Even if you just want to talk about any issues in complete privacy, there is always someone there for you to talk to.
•Stay safe: While Brighton is very safe place but like everywhere there are some exceptions. Stay safe. If you have a bicycle, keep it locked properly.
•Save money and do not fall for loans from dubious agency and people: The major problem faced by many university students is they go on spending spree during first few weeks and months. If you unfortunately spend what you have don’t take loan from random people, talk to university finance support and they can guide in the right direction.
•Scam calls: being international student makes you very vulnerable to scam calls. You can get scam calls from people calling themselves an employee from the Home Office, border agency or from other government departments stating problems with your passport, immigration papers or your student status and will further demand money to resolve them. NO, A big no. DO NOT fall in that trap. Talk to Student Advice or international student support, but don’t pay anything or provide any of your details like address, account number.
•Enjoy and learn: Enjoy your time at university, make lifelong friends and shape your future. University life is an experience which not only educates you but makes you a better person. It will prepare you to adjust in different situations, deal with different kinds of people and will give you unforgettable memories that will last a lifetime. Ensure that you get them all.

Abhishek Kumar Mishra MEng Electrical and Electronics Engineering graduation 2015

Abhishek Kumar Mishra MEng Electrical and Electronics Engineering graduation 2015

Abhishek Kumar Mishra

Abhishek Kumar Mishra

international studentnew international student advice

Sarah Digon • November 16, 2016

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