Skip to content

As a prospective commuting student, beginning university seems all the more daunting; maybe even more-so than if you were going into accommodation, as, there is always that fear that you won’t make friends as easily or relate to the university experience that people talk about as much as those thrown into houses together, or meeting in their accommodation buildings. But, although you may feel that way, and trust me, I did too, I want to talk about why that shouldn’t be a worry!

The first thing I want to talk about is how everyone is in the same situation! Majority of people are starting as first years and will also still be adjusting to being a university student. I found my group of friends through asking them if they knew where the lecture room was (I’m not a very extroverted person either - but I was terrified I would have to walk into my class late) and, as it happened, they were also lost and meant to be in the same class as me!

It’s important to remember that for the first few weeks, nobody really knows what they’re doing either and that it’s a new experience for everyone. The biggest help that I found for making friends as a commuting student was to go out of my way to talk to other people I recognised from my classes, even if it’s just a simple, “hey did you get the answer for number three?” before all of the friend groups start to solidify. That being said, I don’t feel like any particular group of people are closed off at a certain point; everyone there is an adult and realistically you can make new friends at any point in the year, but I’m just speaking from my personal experience. Also, make sure to take part in any activities societies host, it’s a great way to socialise with people you might not normally get the opportunity to!

This brings me to my next point; in my year group there is a big group chat on social media, where we are all told about student society activities and can discuss topics from class, which is another great way to talk to people! It also means you get some insight into how everyone else is interacting and, ultimately, it creates a sense of community among the group, which is so lovely since everyone is going through their degrees together and we can all relate to each other. Even now, as I start second year, people are still being added to the group and it’s being used more and more!

The final thing I want to talk about is nightlife (or the fear of missing out on it). I cannot express enough how much this was something I was worried about, but, honestly, it’s not something to stress about at all! Once you’ve found a great friend group, they tend to make sure you can come with them to things like that if you want to. And, one of the great things about Chester is that it has great transport links with both a bus interchange and a train station not too far from the city centre, so the classic university experience is still more than attainable without the need to be in accommodation. Realistically, you’ll also find yourself doing more things in the daytime, as Chester has a lot of tourist attractions which are easily accessible to students, and I’ve found they often make just as fun memories as when I’ve been on nights out. 

And please remember that this is all from my personal experience, so things may differ for you! But that’s the great thing about it - every university experience is different so don’t overthink it! Just make the most of the time you spend here and surround yourself with people you get along with, and you’ll find university life amazing no matter how you get there!

Share this content