As bright-eyed freshers across the country start their new lives at university, we spoke to a number of student bloggers to see what advice they had for first years. Because, when it comes to navigating the often daunting world of university, who better to go to for advice than students who’ve been through it themselves?
Saving energy might not be a top priority for freshers, but saving money will be. Just think, the less money you’re spending on energy bills, the more money you’ll have to spend on more important things!
The following are some great tips on how to save energy at university, as well as helpful advice for freshers moving into new accommodation.
Check out our simple student guide to energy bills
Nine Grand Student
Nine Grand Student is ran by Chloe, an Actuarial Science student who just graduated from the University of Kent.
Energy saving tip: “My energy saving tip would be to buy lots of blankets and cushions. Not only does this make your house look super-cosy and homely, it makes rooms an awful lot warmer so you can turn the heating down.”
Moving into accommodation: “When moving into student accommodation, make sure you check for mould or damp before signing a contract – steamed up windows are a tell-tale sign.”
Tasha is a third year Speech and Language Therapy student at the University of Manchester, and runs Moustashie, a lifestyle blog.
Energy saving tip: “Turn off all plug sockets when you aren’t using them. It’s such an easy thing to do and it makes such a difference to your energy bill!”
Moving into accommodation: “Make an effort to share food with your new housemates. It sounds ridiculous, but whether it’s a weekly house dinner, snacks for movie nights, baking a cake or even just letting someone borrow your bread, sharing food is a great way to bring people together and build positive relationships.”
hey there Channon
Channon is a third year student at the London School of Economics studying Social Anthropology and blogging at hey there Channon.
Energy saving tip: “In order to save energy, one of the easiest things to do is to turn off a plug socket after using it. As students, we all have multiple electrical devices that don’t necessarily all need to be plugged in and switched on at the same time. Switching the socket off after charging your phone, laptop or any other device is easy. Just don’t forget!”
Moving into accommodation: “For new students moving away to university and into accommodation, I have two tips. First, get there early to avoid the rush on move-in day. Often halls allow students to check-in slightly earlier than stated to prevent queues or delays. Second, always take memoirs of home such as photographs or your favourite knick-knacks to pin to your noticeboard - it helps with dealing with homesickness during the first few weeks.”
Bollianaxo is ran by Bolliana, a Media Production student at Bournemouth University.
Energy saving tip: “There are lots of small things you can do which will help in the long term. Turning the lights off when you leave the room, for example, or making sure that your washing machine is full before using it. When you’re making a cup of tea, perhaps ask your housemates if they want one too so you only need to boil the kettle once. Switching to energy saving light bulbs will also help you to save money in the long term.”
Delightful Book Reviews
Delightful Book Reviews is ran by Alix, an English Literature and Creative Writing Student at the University of Manchester, who also contributes to the university’s official student blog.
Energy saving tip: “Make sure you get into the habit of turning things off at the wall, not just putting them on standby – this goes for things like your bedside lamp, your TV, your radio etc. You’d be surprised how much energy you waste by leaving things on when you really don’t need to. Also, don’t be tricked into topping up your gas in the months of August and September – you really don’t need the heating on and you can waste so much money and energy this way. Make the most of hoodies and blankets and only turn the heating on when you really need to!”
Moving into accommodation: “Make sure you bring a doorstop to university, along with a willingness to talk to people! Keeping your door open lets other students know that you are friendly and approachable and they are more likely to pop in and introduce themselves. Keep an open mind and talk to as many people as possible during Freshers Week. Even though you might not end up being best friends with everyone you meet on the first day, it’s such a great opportunity to get to know as many people as possible, and really get stuck into making friends and making the most of the halls experience.”
Dungarees and Donuts
Olivia is a final year student at Staffordshire University and blogs at Dungarees and Donuts.
Energy saving tip: “Make huge meals and then freeze them – this way you always have a good meal ready! Stews and pasta bakes are good options. This can help you save energy as you won’t be using your oven every day.”
Moving into accommodation: “If you’re moving into halls, don’t spend loads of money on expensive things for the kitchen or bathroom, as they’ll end up being used by everyone!”
Want to know more? Check out our 8 easy energy saving tips for students.