As children grow up parents start to look into the ins and outs of further education for their siblings, and quite often this comes at a great cost as in a lot of cases the chances are that the chosen University may be many miles from their home town.
Parents tend to focus on the financial aspects of this chapter in their child’s development and quite often tend to miss what is important to their maturing teenagers, so here is an idea of what’s important to them and the options to consider from both an accommodation perspective as well as social one.
Expectations of a young student can be very similar no matter what country they are from, after all kids are kids and adolescence all think they are more grown up than they really are anyway.
Lets look at Sheffield in the UK for example. Sheffield University has been described as one of the finest universities in Britain, ushering in minds of greatness and creating adults that do great things and lead wonderful lives through the high distinction of higher education.
But being a student at Sheffield University can be somewhat unnerving. Picking classes is tough enough as is searching for financial aid or having to work and pay it yourself.
Finding a place to live (which may not always be the right one) on the other hand is also a challenge especially if you are not a local. So one of the golden rules is to start the search for suitable accommodation as early as possible and definitely don’t wait to the last minute, because in some Universities there is barely enough student accommodation to go round.
Generally speaking there will be a wide variety of accommodation available before it starts getting booked up, starting with of course with the Halls of residence. The halls of residence seem to be a safe bet for first year students as they are close to (or even within in some cases) the universities themselves.
Sheffield University for example has two halls of residency where students can live, work and play (just a little – have to study!).Being close to the University means that students can easily walk or cycle to classes and meetings (especially handy for the late sleepers).
After their first year and sometimes before, many students feel ready to break from the bonds and security and sometimes crowded dorms and want to have a little bit more independence, so they start to look at private or rented accommodation out side of the University campus.
This is of course when the social aspects of your teenagers personality tend to come to the fore and the lure of the social scene tends to be more important than easily getting to classes so what do teenagers look for here.
To give you some idea Sheffield has an area that is nicknamed by the students the “Golden Mile”. The road is a thruway for students that is littered with many pubs, food places and shopping, and a very short distance away is where a lot of student housing is cantered and the housing that many 2nd and 3rd year students call home. It’s close to the university and offers many amenities to take the mind away from the rigors of college studying.
Most university towns and city’s have these golden areas so make sure you do a little research before coming on your preliminary visit, so if your child does want to live off campus, you know where to find a good location where they will be surrounded by lots of other people of their own age.
The added advantage of these slightly out of town hotspots is of course that food and drink can be much cheaper than in the centre of a town so your child’s (or your) budget will go further.
The City and Town Centres however, tend to offer a totally different proposition when it comes to student accommodation. Often much closer to the party venues City and Town centre accommodation will tend to suit those teenagers who really like to party and make the most of the social scene which can be a bit of a double edge sword for a student party animal, on the one hand they will need to study but on the other they like to let themselves go.
So if your child is the party type, it may be best to steer them gently towards slightly out of town accommodation for the sake of there education and of course not forgetting your pocket more than likely.
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