You went on a year abroad? You should’ve said!!! Joking obviously, you deserve to talk about it all you want, you studied/worked hard? Right? Well even if you did spend the vast majority of your year laid on a beach somewhere, sangria in hand, the simple fact that you now owe 4 years of student loans warrants you the right to talk about it all you want. And that leads me to my first tip:
- Never shut up about it
My first tip – and I would say the most important – is to never stop reliving what was probably the best year of your life. Whether that’s to your housemates, your course-mates, family, even future employers, it was a once in a life time experience – cliché I know – that has touched your life with new experiences, new cultures, new stories, and new skills you should never shut up about.
- Jump straight back in to your second-year social life
You may think all your friends have jumped ship back home when you first get back to England, but the vast majority of people can’t resist Newcastle’s lure. Reach out to as many people as you can, and even if they have gone back to the comfort of their mum’s homes, they were still a big part of your Newcastle life, so keep in touch!
- Keep on top
4th year will hit you like a tonne of bricks. Here it is, the sentence none of you wanted to hear. Unfortunately, a year doing as little as you can (studying-wise) will take a bigger toll on you than ever expected. The deadlines will come flying around that corner, so try your best to get prepared and back ahead - as soon as you can face the Robbo that is.
- Look for the support you need
In all seriousness, returning to university after a year out can be immensely overwhelming. If you find yourself struggling to cope with final year stresses after a year away from this environment, reach out for the support that you need. Visit the Student Advice Centre or the student services building. There are so many people at Newcastle that can help with whatever you’re going through so don’t bottle it up.
- Plan your next adventure
The blues are probably stemming from the fact that it’s 2 degrees outside and you can’t feel your face the second you leave the house. Or simply from the fact that you’ve got itchy feet after such an amazing year! If your last trip rinsed your bank account dry, have a look at volunteering options or even finding a graduate job abroad. What better a motivator for your final year could there be than planning your next ‘once in a life time’ experience.