Happy May everyone! Now that exam season is well underway and that we are close to finishing Semester 2, I thought to write about my experiences as a commuter student and what incoming Masters students need to consider.
The most obvious benefit as to why you should commute is how much money you’ll save! Especially for UK Students, the incoming costs of tuition will either eat up your entire student loan or you’ll have to balance a part-time role, your savings or budget the entire year. As a Masters’ student there’s a considerable insight into the opportunity cost of whether you want a full-bodied University experience at Manchester or to save some money.
Some people may worry that commuting may make you miss opportunities and social events, but a lot of societies (before COVID19) will plan events for a variety of students. The timings and actual events may mean you either have to commute home early, but if you make friends, it’s likely you will have opportunities to meet based on your own timings or help you stay over for an event.
For domestic and EU students there are options to help support you during your Masters’ experience, such as the Manchester Bursary and awards from AMBS that will cover applicants from the United States or if you take specific subjects such as Accounting and Finance.
Although I personally haven’t stayed in accommodation, the experience of visiting different places has given me an idea of what to expect. Staying close to campus is great! You’re able to wake up later than most people and attend your lectures and seminars on time, you’re next to Central Manchester so you can order the most unique and interesting foods, and you can make spontaneous adventures. But… sometimes, some accommodations that are heavily student based cannot be the best experiences for a masters student, especially if it’s with younger students.
If you’re after a more quiet experience, it may be best to consider a studio or small shared apartments with like-minded people. Student accommodations can become noisy and sometimes cleaning responsibilities can be neglected between more people. Personally, I decided that with saving money and having a clean space I was used to, the trade off of commuting was okay. However, if you’re after a full-bodied experience with the absolute highs and lows of University, I do recommend finding a small apartment or house with like-minded people, such as on Manchester’s Student Group.
Happy house-hunting to all!