Fresher or returning student? A new term at college can bring new challenges…

_wfp1309“If plan A didn’t work, the alphabet has 25 more letters…”

Whether you’re a first-time college student or returning for another year, you should by now have settled into (or back into) college life, but sometimes the jump to college from school or sixth form or the prospect of moving on to the next level of your qualification can seem daunting.

With new buildings to get used to, new routes in to college, new faces and new course objectives to get your head around, it’s easy to see how being a student can be faced with lots of questions and/or worries. At college we have a number of support networks and people ready to quash any fears and get you back onto the right path.

Here we’ve compiled a list of potential worries and how to deal with them. Remember, it’s completely normal to feel anxious/nervous/worried, but if it’s impacting on your daily life – it’s time to talk to someone.

I think I’m on the wrong course…
If you’ve found that the course you’re on may not be the right one for you, it’s important to speak to your tutor as soon as possible. The quicker you speak to someone about this, the quicker it could be resolved and the more likely we’ll be able to offer an alternative.

I’ve decided I’d like to go to work instead…

The government has put initiatives in place to ensure all students stay in some form of education or training until they’re 18, so it is worthwhile to stay on at college. If you choose not to, you will still have to either start an apprenticeship, or have part-time training alongside employment (20+ hours a week). If you need advice on what to do, you can speak to the college’s careers and employability team who will advise you of your next steps.

I’m struggling financially…
You might be eligible for financial help if you’re struggling to make ends meet while you’re at college. There are schemes and funds available depending on your person circumstances. There are also separate support schemes for parents to assist with childcare. The student financial support team are always ready to help. For more information, visit: www.wnc.ac.uk/finance

I feel that I haven’t really made many friends…
There are so many social activities outside of lesson time which allow students to get together and meet other people who they may have things in common with. From societies to sports clubs, and organised events you can actively get involved in – you’re bound to find someone you click with. Speak to the Students’ Union who will be happy to help you.

We also have an excellent health and wellbeing team ready to help you with everything from sexual health to stopping smoking. Should you feel you need to talk to someone about any issue (big or small) we have a team who you can speak to in private. We can also arrange counselling should you want extra support.

I think I may need additional learning support in lessons…
The college’s additional learning support team is able to provide support to students who require assistance for a disability and/or learning difficulty. Our trained and experienced staff will with you on an individual basis, to ensure you have the equipment and support necessary to thrive at college. For more information visit www.wnc.ac.uk/als

What other support is available to me at college?
Each student at the college has their own student support coach whose main role is to ensure you’re progressing well in college, and achieving your goal/s.

If you’ve got a general question about college, you can also contact us on our Facebook or Twitter accounts – we’re happy to answer your questions during college hours. We’ve even got our own Whatsapp service if you’d prefer to text us.

Always remember, you’re not alone at college. There’s always an answer and there’s always someone ready to help you find it.

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