Category: Wellbeing

The importance of community in international student accommodation

“Even in accommodation which is specifically for students, it is possible for young people to feel isolated”

Where you live is an extremely important aspect of international student education. Living arrangements do have an emotional impact on students, whether they realise it or not.

For international students who are coming to study in the UK for the first time, the experience of living abroad can feel overwhelming. Most will be far away from friends and family, embarking on an entirely new chapter in their lives.

Cultivating a sense of community within halls of residence and private accommodation is therefore extremely important, particularly for those which are marketed towards international students.

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Why food really matters to international student well-being

“Importing ingredients that help make a ‘local’ dish truly authentic can make a huge difference to students”

Most of us happily take it for granted that we will be able to buy the food we like when we want to. For international students coming to study in the UK, access to the food they like to eat is not a given so schools and colleges that see the true importance of food as a way to; ease homesickness, increase social interaction and improve general well-being should be applauded.

Recent research puts the issue into perspective

Masters student, Erika Stewin undertook research on “food insecurity” issues among international students at two Canadian universities. Her research found that “many students described experiencing food insecurity, students related feelings of depression, homesickness and identity loss, hunger, difficulties with weight loss or weight gain, and stories of being forced to compromise religious beliefs in order to eat.”

So, how can institutions do their very best to ensure food is seen as a crucial aspect of pupil/student wellbeing?

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