It’s unbelievable to think this is my last post of the year! It feels like just a few months ago that I began this journey. I remember this time last year I was anxiously awaiting my arrival to Manchester and was so concerned about meeting new people and experiencing a new lifestyle. Some of the major things you should consider before coming to Manchester, in terms of the logistic, are the pre-departure, departure, and arrival to Manchester. I remember receiving all the welcome items from the University, which helped tremendously, but I also remember feeling nervous and questioned if I was doing everything right – hopefully, this post will help!
For the pre-departure items, I really began to plan early because I wanted to make sure I had everything. By this time last year, I was making sure I had contacted my undergraduate University to get my transcripts/official diploma, had booked the best flight (direct is the way to go!), and made sure I knew what was essential to bring and what was not – this was probably the hardest part! What really helped me was connecting with other students through Manchester Online that were in my program. By doing this I helped establish some initial connections and also got to join our class’ Facebook page, which helped me connect with other students. It was really helpful to connect with another American student in my programme because we had similar backgrounds and flight details, which allowed me to know what to pack and how to fit it all! The best advice I can give is to make a list of what you need, talk to other people about what they’re bringing, and give yourself enough time so you’re not rushing. It was invaluable to have time with friends and family before leaving, so I suggest packing in increments a few weeks ahead of time.
The departure to Manchester was pretty easy as was the arrival. My U.S. Uber account didn’t work at the airport, so I took a black cab for about 20 pounds to Fallowfield where I live. I made sure I bought international calling on my phone prior to leaving, so I could contact my housemates, landlord, and family to let them know I had arrived. Prior to arriving, I made sure to make plans with some new classmates so I could orient myself and make friends right away. I definitely suggest this, as some of my first friends have become my best friends throughout the year!
All in all, I hope that if you’re reading this you’re open and ready for the year ahead. This has been the best year of my life and I wouldn’t have changed or traded it for anything in the world. It is so bittersweet to write this last blog, but I know I’m ready for the future ahead. Cheers to the upcoming year and remember to enjoy every single minute because it flies by in the blink of an eye!