It is so exciting that you are heading to university soon! We want to help you start uni with the tools and confidence you need to start well. So these are some of our top tips!
1. BE READY - James 1:2-4
Dream with God - As you start out at university, the opportunities ahead of you are endless and God wants you to enjoy the adventure. Start university knowing God is both with you and for you in every situation and spend some time before you arrive dreaming with God about all that lies ahead. Once you get there, simply pray ‘God, please use me, Amen’ and be open to what God has to say to you! Through being open to God, others and opportunities, expect to change and grow up, so enjoy the process and who you are becoming.
Be proactive - Ask students and people you know the lessons they learned at uni, the things they are really pleased they did, the things they wish they had avoided and what advice they’d offer you. Contact churches in your university town or city via Fusion’s free Student Linkup app and get hold of Fusion's Student Linkup box that goes into detail about life at university and helps you connect with churches (buy one here).
2. BE YOURSELF - Romans 12:2
It is so important you think about who you really are and want to be, what you believe and why you believe it before university. God made you who you are and that is a gift! You were not created to fit in but to be set apart. As followers of Jesus, there are many distinctive characteristics that set us apart, just through us being ourselves and knowing why we hold our convictions. We are called to be a city on a hill - you can do this by living differently on campus; living a hopeful, generous, kind, faith-filled and spirit-fuelled life on campus. Take some time to really think and pray about who you are going to be at university before and whilst you are there.
At uni there's no one to wake you up on Sunday morning and you'll have no problem getting served in the Student Union bar, so why don't Christians get drunk every night and why bother with church? Think about the reasons behind your actions and decisions, rather than it just being another rule or something Christians just ‘don't do’.
3. BE CHURCH - 1 Corinthians 12:27
It is important to find and choose a church where we can thrive and grow, a place where we can learn, a place where we can get stuck in and become a part of the community. Here are some questions which will help you make wise decisions about which church to choose.
Is this a church where I can get involved and feel welcome?
Is this a church that will challenge me in my faith?
Is this a church that will encourage and equip me to share my faith with my friends?
God, where do you want me to be whilst I’m at university?
So how do you find a church?
1. Download Student Linkup - our free app helps you to find and connect with local churches in your university town or city before you arrive.
2. Shortlist 2 or 3 churches to visit - don’t try a different church every week or you’ll never end up stuck into your community. Try a few and then commit and get plugged in.
3. Commit - no church is perfect and there is always something you wish was done differently, bhut commit to a church family and get stuck in serving them. This is the best way to meet people and feel like you belong.
4. BE FRIENDS
University is a fresh start and the perfect time to make lots of new friends, some of which will be lifelong - but at the start it can be hard to begin. So here are 5 ways to develop friendships at university:
1. Be friendly - At the start nobody knows anybody. So be open, friendly and ask people good questions (for some help check out our DMC deck that is full of amazing questions to ask!)
2. Get out of your room - Try not to just stay in your room - go study in the campus coffee shop, library or organise to meet up with course mates. Get a doorstop for your room too so your 'door is always open' for people to come and chat to you!
3. Challenge yourself - step out of your comfort zone and be a good friend to people! Overcome your fears and laziness to make the most of this amazing opportunity.
4. Join a club or society - get stuck in with something you care about or try something new for fun! Let your giftings and passions lead the way and help you connect with others who share them.
5. Commit to a church - church is the place where you will make friends with other Christian students and find family away from home with people from all walks of life.