Firstly, welcome to Australia and congratulations on choosing to study here in Newcastle. We know it can be frightening living in a new country and starting your studies at the same time is a big challenge. There are many changes that will be happening in your first semester of uni here in Newcastle. To help you settle in we have asked Staff and Students to provide their tips on how to make your Uni experience more successful. Please read these ten tips for getting started at the University of Newcastle.
1) Sort out your accommodation early
There are a number of options for accommodation on or near campus. We offer on campus accommodation at Callaghan and the Central Coast. There is also a registry of accommodation near all domestic campuses of the University.
If you are here alone you may wish to apply for on campus accommodation for between $133 – $245 Per Week. If you choose to live off campus you may wish to rent a room in a share house for between $80 and $180 per week. If you are here with your family, you will need to look at off campus accommodation. A 2-3 bedroom house/apartment will set you back between $200 and $500 per week.
Before you start looking for accommodation it is best to be clear on what you require. Consider what is important to you and what your needs are, and ask yourself how these will affect your choice of property.
To visit accommodation services click here. This site holds great resources about how to find off campus accommodation as well as information about the application process for on campus accommodation.
You might like to also consider Homestay. Homestay is a great way to learn about Australian culture and to practice your English, while making life-long friendships with an Australian family. The Homestay accommodation fee is $190-$205 per week (depending on whether you wish to have 16 or 21 meals provided to you). For more information please visit http://www.newcastle.edu.au/service/accommodation/homestay/
2) Finding your way around campus and the local area.
If you are new to the area make sure that you know your way around. There are many transport routes to the University campuses and the uni even offers a carpooling scheme so that you can avoid the struggle of parking in the morning!
If you would like to drive and live in the local area why not have a read about Newcastle. If you’re still curious, look on Google maps. UoN has information on the campus and surrounding suburbs on this website: http://www.newcastle.edu.au/location/
Alternatively, why not look at the local council websites and tourism sites for further information:
- Callaghan and City Campus - http://www.newcastle.nsw.gov.au/
- Central Coast Campus - http://www.wyong.nsw.gov.au/
- Port Macquarie Campus - http://www.hastings.nsw.gov.au/www/html/7-home-page.asp
- Visit Newcastle – http://www.visitnewcastle.com.au/pages.asp?code=45
- Visit Ourimbah - http://www.visitnsw.com/town/Ourimbah.aspx
3) Think before (be safe)
Think Before understands that leaving home to study overseas often brings great rewards and new life challenges. Some international students in Australia are not aware of the risks in their new environment and a minority of students have been placing themselves in high risk situations. Like most big cities around the world it pays to be aware of your surroundings. The international student safety campaign thinkbefore.com.au is designed to sharpen safety skills when travelling late at night. Have a look at the Think Before Safety site and be aware of your safety on campus.
4) Make sure your enrolment is correct.
As a new student, the process of enrolling can be confusing! Choosing subjects, enrolling in MyHub and choosing tutorials is all part of making sure you are setting yourself to be successful in your studies.
To make sure you are in the right subjects, you should have a look at the Program Enrolment Checklist for your degree. This can be found in the ‘further information’ in your program handbook.
1000 level means it is a first year subject. In Semester one, most 1000 subjects do not require the completion of other subjects. If you enrol in a 2000, 3000 or 4000 level subject, you need to have met the requirements for that subject. If you are in your first year of study, you need to be enrolling in 1000 level subjects unless you have received credit, or you are advised to enrol in a 2000 level subject in the program enrolment checklist.
If you are confused about your enrolment, it is worthwhile visiting a Student Hub for assistance.
5) Look at your finances.
Moving away from home can be expensive. Even though Newcastle has a fairly low cost of living, your expenses can add up. The costs of student related items can be found at the Student Finances website.
Scholarships: There are a few scholarships on offer to International Students studying at the University of Newcastle. Information on a number of these scholarships is below.
- International Student Research and Postgraduate Scholarships
- Faculty of Engineering and Built Environment International Student Scholarship
- International Foundation Program Undergraduate Scholarship
- Aus AID Scholarships
Please note that this list is subject to change. For further information please visit the scholarships website.
6) Finding Part Time employment
If you’re looking for part time employment, the first place to visit is CareerHub, the online vacancy posting system that is available exclusively to University of Newcastle students and alumni. This user-friendly search system gives you access to a number of different employment postings, including graduate positions, vacation work, work experience, international jobs, casual and part-time work.
Looking for part time / casual work can be a competitive process. The Careers service at the Uni can help with checking resumes, practicing interview skills and have many tips sheets and FAQs located in the right hand menu of CareerHub. It is also worthwhile keeping an eye at the Jobs on Campus website
The Careers service run workshops at the start of each semester on how to find part time employment. For a schedule of these workshops please visit CareerHub.
It may also be worthwhile to check the local newspaper on a weekend, or visit one of the following websites:
|SEEK||MY Career||Career ONE|
7) Know your support on campus
The University of Newcastle has a wide range of student support services that exist to help students – just like you! If you are unsure of the correct service to help you, why not complete one of our quizzes or make an appointment to see a Connect 2 Success adviser.
The University's International Student Support Team also provides a range of welfare and support services, which are designed to give you access to information that will make your time at the university a rich and academically rewarding experience. The team also offers practical and personal support to students who find themselves in unfamiliar circumstances and who need local advice and help.
The International Student Support team are available to assist international students in need. You may simply send an email to International-Support@newcastle.edu.au for advice and or assistance or make direct contact with a specific staff member by using the information provided below. While each staff member has their own portfolio all are available to assist students and staff with general enquiries.
Our Emergency After Hours Hotline is: 1800 081 233. Alternatively, contact the University's Security office (02 4921 5888) and ask for assistance.
8) Communicate with your friends and family back home
Even though you are in a new country, your friends, family and community back home will still be part of your life. It is important that you try to maintain regular communication with your family and friends. Keep friends and family up to date about your uni experience, what you’re learning and what’s most challenging.
You are able to purchase international calling cards at the Post Office on campus. The cost of the phone call will depend on the country you call.
The University of Newcastle campuses have wireless and as a student you are able to connect for free. There is a 24 hour computer lab in the City, Callaghan and Ourimbah campus. This can provide you with an opportunity to get on skype or msn and talk to home at any time – day or night! Make sure that your internet settings are correct for these programs on campus; otherwise you won’t be able to connect.
Laptop - Getting Connected (http://www.newcastle.edu.au/service/wireless/getting-connected/)
9) Make friends at Uni
The University is a great place to make friends! Get to know your classmates as soon as possible. Introduce yourself whenever you sit next to them in lectures and tutorials. Aim to meet one new classmate each week.
Some programs run student groups that arrange regular social events. These can be a great way to meet people enrolled in your course. Most of these groups have a facebook site such as:
- Law students
- Physics Society
- Fine Art Students
- Design Student
- Biomedical Science students
- And More…
NUSA also offers many clubs and societies that can help you to meet people at Uni. Not only does NUSA offer student societies for many countries, but clubs based on interests and beliefs. For more information on these clubs please click here.
For information on upcoming Uni events please view the following:
10) Make networks in Newcastle
A new town can be a lonely and frightening place, especially when everything is so different! One way to help you adjust to this is to make your own networks in Newcastle. The University and local area offer you many ways to start connecting with Newcastle:
- Community Connections Program
The Community Connections Program is a cross cultural friendship program through which volunteers from the local community link with international students from all levels of study.
- Cultural Connections
Cultural Connections is an orientation and support program for the partners of international students, partners of visiting academic members of staff and Research Higher Degrees candidates.
- Northern Settlement Services (formerly Migrant Resource Centre Of Newcastle & Hunter Region)
Northern Settlement Services deliver settlement services to a comprehensive client base and are strategically placed to develop new services in response to local need in the area of operations the Hunter, Central Coast, and Northern Tablelands of NSW. Their services include multi-lingual information and referral, casework and counselling, community education and development.
Address: 8 Chaucer St, Hamilton, NSW, 2303
Phone number: (02) 49693399