Wednesday, 20 April 2016

Naomi: 8 must-haves to put on your checking list

Hey guys, it is Naomi, the Chinese International ambassador. You can find out more about me here

There are many people asking me what they should bring as a fresher, so today I’m giving you my own checking list from my experience of  living the UK for 5 years.

1: Raincoat/ Waterproof jacket 

My rain jacket 
As many of you know that England is not the sunniest place on Earth, therefore it is important to keep yourself warm and dry. Personally I would recommend to bring a waterproof coat. You will find it’s more useful than an umbrella, especially because Sheffield is quite windy. A waterproof jacket will make sure whatever you wear underneath it is dry. Trust me, no one want to sit in a lecture soaking wet because of the strong wind. 

2: Plug adaptor: 
Multi country adptor 
English sockets are different from Europe and most parts of the world, you might want to get one or two plug adaptors before coming to the UK since there is no guarantee that you can find the one fit your plug in the shops. You can always get one from boots or argos but the price is usually higher. The best adaptor to get is the international ones shown in the picture, thus you don’t need to buy a new one when you plan a  trip to other countries.

3: Your favorite sauce:
When I first came to the UK, it took me a while to get used to the English cuisine. Unavoidably there might be time you feel homesick, the cure for that is simply a teaspoon of your favorite sauce to put into your food. The familiar flavour will give you a homey feelings , which will make you feel much better.  There is a Chinese shop on West Street and a few European/ Indian shops around the Moor but they may not have very specific ones.  However, DO NOT bring food such as meat, dairy or seeds since they are banned to bring from non-EU countries and you can find them in every supermarkets.

4: A paper mini-dictionary 

If English is not your first language and you are not doing an English language course, you will be allowed to bring a small paper dictionary into your exams. Paper publications are expensive in England so it will be better to bring your own. Also you will have a chance to see how complex the words are in the dictionary. Try to practice how to use the paper dictionary before your exams will save you a lot of time. 

5:  A scientific calculator

If you are doing a science, economics or engineering related course, it will be useful to bring your calculator. The most of the labs do provide equipment like this but you will need a non-graphic one (eg. the one you use for your A-levels) in your exams. You can always buy one from the student shop in SU, but why waste the money if you have your own?

6: Your personal essentials

Things I can't live without--
glasses, cream for my
extra-sensitive skin and a
wooden lucky decroation
given by my parents
Living cost in Sheffield is relatively cheaper than other major cities so you don’t need to bring everything, but it is wise to bring the essentials that you can’t find here (especially for international students). 
If you wear glasses, don’t forget to get an extra pair since it is not only expensive but the material might not be the ones you are comfortable with. Get a photo of your family or bring that one or two things from you room to make your accommodation more cozy.  Check with your doctor if you can find similar medication in the UK and do ask for an evidence of script. 

7: Documents 

Always, always, always check if you have all the documents you need -- passport/ driving license/ resident permit, etc. Print a copy of your CAS, insurance and other document just in case. Also bring couple of passport style photo for other applications. 

8: Open mind

Physical goods can always be priced but what is in your mind is more percious. Coming to study in an university means you will meet many different people and often being out of your comfort zone. Keep an open mind to what others say and do, be critical with your words and accept that people are usually different in various but beautiful ways. The most important thing is to appreciate this unique experience and challenge yourself ! 

By Naomi Guo
International Office Ambassador of China 

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