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Starting University: What to Expect, How to Prepare, Go and Enjoy

A parent of a current Year 10 student and another daughter that left BHS for university last year has recently published a book that is an interesting read for all heading/considering university life soon. 

'Starting University' is a practical, easy-to-read guide for students taking that exciting and/or scary leap to university in the UK.

It includes information about what to expect, how to prepare, what to take and how to deal with many of the new experiences they’ll be facing during their first year.

Included in the book are suggestions on essentials to pack, from bedding to first aid kits and basic kitchen implements, alongside advice on friendships and relationships, nights out and staying safe, food and laundry. From Freshers’ Week to study strategies and finances to mental health, it’s all here. And there’s a chapter for parents too.

It’s packed full of good advice, useful checklists and wise, witty and poignant comments from first year university students.

Some quotes from students about the book:

“Everything about going to university is made so simple. There were things I hadn't thought of doing and the double checklist is great!”

“I loved it and felt there was nothing missing. My mum and I wished we could have had this book because she felt we were doing it blind.”

“I really enjoyed reading this book. I LOVE that both sides (positive and negative) of social media are highlighted. And listing the different places you can reach out to if you’re really struggling is great - it highlights that there are lots of options!”

And some quotes from parents about the book:

“So many things to think about in such an easy to read format. I love the checklist and ticking it off twice – great idea to help feel in control of jumping off the precipice into the unknown. I wish I had this book when I went off to university - it would have made my first year so much easier!”

“It’s very easy to read and digest. Really nicely presented with not too much information on each page to overwhelm you. The link to the website that shows how much they pay in rent at each university and how much they spend on food etc is a great idea. It’s useful to get an idea of monthly outgoings and that looks spot on!”

“This book is helpful on so many counts. I'm a planner and the timeline is really useful in telling me what my daughter needs to do and by what date. Also, the money section prepares us for how much we'll need to give her and how much she'll need to pay back when she graduates. It's brilliant: one place to go to for everything we need to know.”

“This is amazing. Totally understandable even to a non-uni goer like me. So well written and I can totally see why both students and parents would benefit from reading it.”

About the author: Melissa Scallan is a journalist with a background in research and a Master’s degree in psychology from the London School of Economics. Her daughter started university in September 2018. She returns home occasionally with large bags of laundry.  To buy your copy, click here!