As you adjust to life at King’s, you may experience feelings of homesickness and loneliness from time to time. Feelings of loneliness and homesickness can arise at any time during your studies, whether you’re starting university for the first time, returning for a new year, or returning to studying after many years. It’s important to know that many students will also experience this too, and that there are many resources available to help you alleviate these feelings.
This year has been especially challenging; we know that the Coronavirus pandemic has made it harder for everyone to stay in touch with loved ones, especially meeting with them face-to-face. This will be especially true if you've recently moved to London from another country and/or are having to self-isolate. In this article we’ve drawn together the different ways you can seek support and connect with others.
In this article:
What is the W Curve?
The W curve highlights the key stages of transition that many students experience during their first year at University and gives you helpful tips on how to adjust to and overcome each stage.
The King’s College London Students’ Union (KCLSU) Wellbeing Hub has a wealth of resources and activities to help you to boost your wellbeing throughout your studies.
Every year, KCLSU hold a wide range of activities and campaigns across all campuses, all of which have been inspired by the ‘King’s 5 Ways to Wellbeing’.
Find out more about how KCLSU can support you in our article What does KCLSU offer to support my wellbeing?
Even though lots of things are online this year, there’s still plenty of events taking place. Check out KCLSU’s events & activities which you can get involved in.
We recommend looking through our Student life category, which covers all sort of topics – from personal tutoring, life in London as a student and more about KCLSU and the range of extra-curricular activities you can try.
If you feel like you’d really like to connect more with others, you may wish to find out more about Service at King’s and what you could to do to get involved – check out our article How can I give back and support my community? to find out more.
Join a student group at KCLSU
At KCLSU, there are nearly 300 societies, sports and academic groups where you can meet and engage with members across our student community.
From the ‘DJ society’ to the ‘IoPPN Forum’ there are a wide range of groups that you can join! Find out more information on:
Positive Peers are student partners of King's College London Student's Union (KCLSU) Wellbeing, who promote positive mental health and wellbeing for all students at King’s. Throughout the academic year, Positive Peers support a wide range of wellbeing outreach activities and workshops designed to empower and encourage students to take a proactive approach when looking after their physical and mental wellbeing.
For information on how the Positive Peers can support you, take a look at Who are the Positive Peers?
Black Students Talk
Tips on making new friends at university
Below are some helpful resources you can use to help you meet and connect with new friends at University:
Student space have some helpful tips and useful suggestions on making friends online, building a network and managing conflict throughout the pandemic
At Belonging, community and friendships we have more information on the various communities at King’s you can join, such as the Climate Action Network, Cultural champions and many more.
At home in Cultural London is an online extracurricular experience that has been designed to connect you to London, and King's through culture, and could be a great way to connect with other students through group discussions and live creative workshops.
King's Sport delivers a range of opportunities for students and staff to get involved in sport and physical activity, with an ambition to be the most active university in London.
They are running various classes online to help keep you fit, and you can sign up to their app King’s Move which you can use to gather points and rewards.
There is also the Active Wellness scheme, which is an initiative to help anyone within the King’s community who suffers from any mental or physical health issues through the use of exercise therapy.
Find out more at King’s Sport.
Campus Conversations is an initiative at King's that aims to connect students to have meaningful conversations with others within with community, gain useful skills, and feel part of the wider King’s community. For 2020-21, this initiative is running online.
How can I sign up to the scheme?
To sign up, you’ll need to complete a web form at Campus Conversations.
The Chaplaincy is made up of friendly Chaplains ordained from different faiths, who provide support for all students and staff at King’s of all faiths, and none. They are inclusive; whoever you are, wherever you’re from, whatever you believe, whomever you love - you are welcome.
They hold 1:1 appointments, weekly reflections, pastoral support, mindfulness and space for prayer and meditation. To find out more, check out our article The Chaplaincy.
Sometimes juggling the various practical demands of living independently and balancing these with your studies, can be daunting and overwhelming, and can lead to feelings of isolation and loneliness. These are some tips and guidance to help you manage the practical elements of student life.
A student for the first time?
If you’re new and starting university for the first time, and university life is not quite what you imagined, please do take a look out the articles in our New students category where you’ll see section called Adjusting to student life. The articles here cover a range of topics, from practical tips like how to manage your money, register with a doctor, avoid common scams, to supporting your academic experience such as developing your skills, how to use Libraries & Collections effectively.
You may also find our article I’m finding it hard to adjust to university life, what can I do? helpful.
Coming back to university after a break?
If you’re returning to university after a break in studies – perhaps you took an interruption last year, did study abroad or a placement, or perhaps you’re returning to university as a postgraduate and finding life different to your undergraduate experience.
If this is you, take a look at our Returning to study category. Here, we’ve pulled together articles from across a range of categories which we think you’ll find especially helpful as you adjust to returning to university life.
If you’re simply returning for your next year of study and feel like lots has changed, take a look at our section on Beginning a new year at King's which will give you lots of articles covering a wide range of topics including the key changes this year and handy tips and reminders for being back at university.
King’s has lots of support available to you from our support and wellbeing services if you’re struggling with university, feeling low, or if a range of difficulties with your course or the practical elements of managing student life are getting you down.
Counselling & Mental Health Support Service can help
The C&MHS Service offer free and confidential support if you’re struggling with your mental health. Counselling offers a safe, confidential and supportive space, to help you to explore your problems, share and gain insight into your feelings, thoughts and behaviour. Counselling can help you gain a different perspective on yourself and/or your problems and help you in making choices and changes that feel right for you.
Find out more about how counselling can help you.
Personal tutors can help
Reach out and contact your personal tutor – you can find their details on Student Records. They will be able to talk to you about how your programme is structured and how to access support this year. Navigating university life can be complicated at the best of times, and your personal tutor can help you with this.
If you’re uncertain about personal tutoring, how it works, what it’s for and how your personal tutor can be there for you, these articles will help you:
Your department and/or faculty can help
Each department and faculty can help you through your studies, with practical support to do with your course, but also by supporting your general wellbeing. If you have concerns about your course or you're struggling to adjust to university life this year, do approach your department for support.
Here's a breakdown of the best contacts for support by faculty:
Arts & Humanities
King’s Business School
Contact your Personal Tutor Support Officer, Angela Robinson
The Dickson Poon School of Law
Faculty of Natural & Mathematical Sciences
Faculty of Social Science & Public Policy
Faculty of Life Sciences & Medicine
Get in touch through your Student Hub
Florence Nightingale Faculty of Nursing, Midwifery & Palliative Care
Contact your personal tutor (especially if related to placements)
Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience
Refer to the department’s Information for Students
Faculty of Dentistry, Oral & Craniofacial Sciences
External online resources
Additional resources you can access include:
Student Space is here to make it easier for you to find the support you need during the coronavirus pandemic