International Students House
Accommodation Student Life Student Tips

The Social Side of Living in Student Accommodation

One of the most significant elements of the university experience is the opportunity to create lifelong friendships and build a sense of community. Student accommodation plays a big part in this; not only do you get to make this place your home but you can also form friendships and create memories. In this blog, we’ll discuss the importance of the social aspect of student accommodation and delve into how you can build relationships and foster a vibrant community with your friends.

Creating Connections

Student accommodation serves as a melting pot of diverse individuals, each with their own backgrounds, interests, and aspirations. Whether living in shared houses or student halls, you have the opportunity to meet peers from various walks of life. Embracing this diversity and being open to new experiences is the first step towards building meaningful connections. Residences like ISH have a very diverse community, and you could find yourself living next to someone from a whole different continent.

Two guys talking to each other
It is a good idea to talk to your flatmates and get to know them. This is a great way to start interacting with people if you’re nervous about making friends.

Breaking the Ice

Everyone who comes to university is nervous when they first arrive. Initiating conversations with roommates and fellow residents can be scary, but it’s the first step towards building connections. Simple gestures such as introducing yourself, inviting others for a meal, or organising a small get-together can go a long way in breaking the ice and fostering a sense of friendship. ISH offers free brunch every weekend in the common room, giving residents a chance to mingle and connect over food. Instead of isolating yourself with your headphones, grab your tray and approach someone who is also seated by themselves. Chances are they are just as scared, anxious and curious as you are.

Getting Involved

Active participation in communal activities and events is key to building connections within student accommodations. Whether it’s joining study groups, attending social gatherings organised by your university or a group of previous residents. When you get involved in activities you get the chance to meet new people and bond over shared interests. At ISH,  our residents get together over different events, sports and even through travel. Our travel club is a great way to meet other university students and explore the UK all at once.

People doing yoga
It is very easy to just stay in your room when you arrive at university, however it is a good idea to try and go to activities or events. This will help with your confidence and enable yo to meet new people.

Utilising Common Spaces

Common areas within student accommodation, such as lounges, kitchens, and communal study spaces, serve as hubs for social interaction. Encouraging residents to utilise these spaces for group study sessions, movie nights, or casual conversations helps create a sense of belonging. You will get to know each other by experiencing fun activities instead of starting conversations which can be daunting. Building a sense of community within student accommodation not only enhances the living experience but also provides invaluable support networks and friendships that can last a lifetime.

A group of students sat at the table in the kitchen
You have to remember that common spaces such as lounges and kitchens are there for a reason. Everyone wants to make friends at university so, don’t feel like you have to be by yourself.

Communication and Collaboration

Open and transparent communication is vital for encouraging a supportive community environment. Speak up and voice your opinions, concerns, and ideas when you engage with fellow residents, your neighbours or your roommate. Many student accommodations have someone you can go to and address any concerns you may have. At ISH, we have Dr Sharon Bolton, the Dean of Student Life and Amy, the Events and Student Experience Manager. We also have Resident Advisors assigned to each floor who can present resident issues to management and assist you with settling in. Our Duty Managers are in the building 27/7 so there is always someone to attend to any issues you may have.Platforms such as resident forums or social media groups can facilitate communication with other residents.

Celebrating Diversity and Inclusivity

Embracing the diversity within student accommodation and celebrating cultural differences promotes inclusivity and understanding. Engage with multicultural events, food festivals, and awareness workshops and learn from other people’s experiences and perspectives.  “All it takes is talking to people. Interacting with different people will give you exposure to the world’s diversity in a way that no book can ever explain.”

A group of women smiling for a photo.
University is a place where you would find many different nationalities. You will come across so many people from different walks of life who can help you in the future.

Student accommodation is more than just a place to live; it’s a vibrant hub where lifelong friendships are created, and a sense of community is developed. Coming into a new area where you most likely don’t know anyone can be hard, but making the effort to actively engage with different students will help you feel more at home. As we navigate the social side of student accommodation, let’s remember that the connections we make and the communities we build contribute significantly to our personal growth and well-being during our university years and in the future.


Have you also read these articles?

Managing Roommate Relationships: Tips for a Harmonious Living Experience

How to find student accommodation in London

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