This year was our first year in the UK having transitioned from the University of Southampton Malaysia Campus in September 2015. It has been an interesting and challenging experience so far. Here I thought I’d share my experience of my transition to the UK from the Malaysia Campus.

It’s easy to forget the fact that although this is our first year in the UK, we are in our 3rd year of our studies. The campus here in Southampton has so much to offer and so many new things to try in terms of extra-curricular activities. You may sometimes feel like you’re a deer in the headlights with so many things to look forward to. It’s important to find a balance as being in our third year counts for a bigger portion to our degree than the first 2 years combined.

During the Bunfight, an event where all the clubs and societies from the Southampton University showcase what they have to offer for the academic year, I signed up for so many activities that I forgot what I had signed up for. I spent weeks trying some of them out but quickly realized that I had to manage my time between studies and extra-curricular activities. There’s only so much time in a week, and I had to make sure that I set aside enough time for my studies. Eventually I settled for Football and the Malaysian Night. It was not an easy decision to make as there were so many activities that I wanted to participate in but would’ve taken up too much of my time. Not to forget that all Engineering students will also have to be consistent with their Individual Project work as well as their studies. For most, their individual project may not be something they are familiar with and hence would need to put in extra hours.

My advice for the future students transitioning from the Malaysia Campus is to set aside at least 2 nights for studies and catching up. Spend the first 2 or 3 weeks trying new things and settle down on a maximum of 3 activities per week after that (given that one activity takes up 1 day, which in a lot of cases it isn’t). Also, ensure that you meet your supervisor at least once a week to ensure you’re on the right track. It may all sound doom and gloom, but it won’t be if you are able to organize your time effectively. With that I look forward to seeing the next batch of transitioning students from USMC and hope with this they feel better prepared for the Southampton experience.

Studying & Socialising: Finding the right balance

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