Difficulties faced by a college student
They rightly say, "All good things come with a pinch of salt". Leaving home and going to a new city is never an easy task. There are a lot of ups and downs a student faces when they relocate for the first time without their parents for college.
However, all problems have a solution. In today’s edition of looking forward to college, we’re going to discuss a few difficulties students might face when they expose themselves to entirely new and different surroundings. But don’t worry we also have a few innovative solutions to help you through them!
Although college is said to be one of the most memorable times of a student’s life, the initial days can be pretty difficult, especially for those who are introverts and find it difficult to make new friends. College is a slice of the real world and provides great lessons for the future! Especially when it comes to dealing with independence, making decisions and most importantly learning the value of money. When I moved from my home city to Bangalore, I faced a lot of problems in my initial days. Here are some of the problems that I faced and how one can tackle them.
One of the biggest problems is to adjust to the culture, tradition and language of a new city. For instance, if you live somewhere in the north and choose a college in the south or vice versa there is a vast difference between the two. The food, the language, the values and even the way of teaching is alien.
Communication is the biggest headache! Simple things like buying vegetables and negotiating with the local auto walas become a herculean task. Adjusting to people from different cultures in the classroom may also be an issue.
I feel the best way to overcome this is to make friends with localities. They’ll know the exact tips and tricks on how to survive in this foreign city and in a matter of days you’ll find yourself arguing passionately using words from a new language with those stubborn auto walas.
Till school, you have those 5 to 6 friends who know everything about you. They know when you’re sad, when you’re mad and even when you’re just hungry. They’re your entourage and you trust them with your life but in college, everyone is an absolute stranger.
It could feel extremely daunting and lonely at first when you have no one around. You might find it difficult to bond with and trust these new people but believe you me after the first two semesters you wouldn’t be able to imagine your life without these people.
In the initial days of college, try putting yourself out there. Initiate conversations with strangers and sign up for as many clubs and societies as possible. These initial interactions really go a long way. Everyone at this stage is just looking for a friend.
Ahh… this is a tough one. Till now you’re not at all familiar with the concepts of buying groceries and paying bills. Rent and maintenance are words you might have never thought about. Back home your parents took care of all of this.
Keeping track of expenses and not going over budget is genuinely cumbersome in the beginning. With this newfound independence to make a few financial decisions, students go wild and spend their money on extravagant outings and articles of clothing only to find themselves eating Maggi at the end of the month.
With time you get the hang of things. You could use budgeting apps like Mint and Splitwise to keep track of your expenses. You could also take up a personal finance course which is available to students in most colleges. Be aware of the student discounts available in different outlets and avail them shamelessly.
Leaving all this aside, the most common problem which is extremely difficult to overcome is homesickness. Homesickness is the one thing each student faces when they leave home. The feeling of missing, “Maa ke hath ka khana”, your friends and the places you used to hang out is something we all go through. I faced this for around a month myself! What helped me tackle this is diverting my mind. I set across town to discover new places and explore the city. It’s amusing how these uncharted territories once feel like home now.
Also, I had a local guardian in the city whom I would visit when I felt low. Try to stay in touch with your school friends. Homesickness stays around for a few days, once things are smooth, everything feels normal and fun.
Once you overcome all these problems, trust me there exists no better memory than your college life. College offers you a lot of new opportunities and exposure to showcase your inner talent. It makes you stronger, independent and brave enough to fight your problems.
Though there are several problems in the beginning, eventually with time all these problems are overcome as you start making friends and are more comfortable with the city and its people. So keep your chin up and be ready to have a memorable college life ahead which is full of fun, learning, and new experiences!