Moving away from home for the first time can be quite a daunting experience. You’re on the other side of the country from your family – in the middle of a pandemic, may I add – and you can’t just ask your parents for help with every little thing. You may find yourself suddenly needing to do a lot of DIY around your student house or realising that your academic writing isn’t quite up to scratch. Perhaps you simply need a bit of reassurance that there are people in the same boat as you. Well, we’ve found some of the useful services that are available for students in Liverpool to make that transition to independence that bit easier – whether you’re a first year, or if you just got a bit too used to living at home in lockdown!
1. Tool Library
Living in a student house, you often find that there are lots of small jobs that need doing. Obviously, though, we’re students, and we can’t afford to buy a piece of equipment for every DIY challenge. That’s where the Liverpool Tool Library comes in, which is essentially a community toolbox set up by people who are striving to operate a sustainable and accessible tool inventory.
The community resource is built on donations of tools, and for a recommended donation of £20 per year, you can receive access to the tool inventory (there is the option to pay what you can/more than £20). A membership with the tool library would be a great investment for you and your housemates for any and every project you undertake on the house. To learn more, you can find the Liverpool Tool Library on Facebook and online here.
The step-up from A-level to degree standard academic writing is a big one, whatever subject you’re studying. If you’re at UoL and find that you’re struggling to hit the higher marks with your essays, Writing@Liverpool is a free service available to students who want to boost their academic writing skills.
There are one-to-one appointments available with writing tutors who can help students with question analysis, critical thinking and essay planning. If you think that this will be helpful to the progress of your studies, then you can book an appointment on the library website.
3. Careers studio
One of the scariest parts of university is the prospect of job hunting afterwards, whether you know what career you want to get into or have absolutely no clue at all! The Careers studio is a place run by student Career Coaches, where you can go for all sorts of career advice, from CV building to interview practice.
At the moment, it is a completely virtual space, and students can drop into a zoom call with one of the Career Coaches at any time from this page on the UoL student intranet. One of the great things about the Careers studio is that it’s run by fellow students, who are likely to understand what you’re going through and will offer advice that they themselves would appreciate hearing.
4. Student-run Proofreading services
Along a similar line of student-led services like Writing@Liverpool and the Careers studio, some students use their skills to help out their fellow students with proofreading assignments and other documents while also making a bit of extra money for themselves.
Morgan, an English Language student at UoL, runs a proofreading business alongside her studies. Morgan advertises her business on Fiverr, explaining how she proofreads and edits blog posts, articles, essays and web pages up to 4000 words at a range of prices, checking for spelling and grammar mistakes, as well as general “waffle”. Check out Morgan’s page on Fiverr for more details and her full range of prices.
5. Different Facebook groups
This year has the potential to be quite isolating for some students, whether it’s because you didn’t quite manage to find “your people” in first year, or in your flat this year, then there are plenty of Facebook groups for Liverpool students where you can get to know people or ask for help in many aspects of university life.
Firstly, the Liverpool Link-Up Facebook group is a place for students to meet like-minded people and make new friends at a time where it is very difficult to do so. Similarly, Smithdown Ticket Exchange is a Facebook group where Liverpool students (not just those living in Smithdown), can sell tickets, ask questions, and borrow things from other students – it’s definitely worth joining for all Liverpool students!
Hopefully, at least some of these services will help to make your time at university just a little less stressful, whether you manage to boost your grades, find your new favourite takeaway courtesy of Smithdown Ticket Exchange, or complete that DIY project you’ve been meaning to get started on since September.