How I Made The Hard Decision To Change Universities

It's not you, it's me. (Actually, it's kind of you.)

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There’s no better feeling than being accepted into university. The pressure is lifted, the woes of HSC are over. You’re a whole new person.

But what happens when you go through a semester of uni only to realise that it doesn’t feel right? Suddenly the coffee burns your tongue and your textbooks feel heavier. The commute drags on and the tutors don’t see you struggling to keep up with the content. You’re on a tough road here because you could be at the wrong university.

You’ve reached a crossroad, unsure about which path to take. You’re comfortable at your current university and fear the process of changing, but you’re also unhappy with staying because you could be doing much more somewhere else.

If you’re looking to make the switch, here are some of the things you should think about.

Your HECS Debt

As hard as it is to look at your bank account or even consider how much debt you’ll be in after you finish your degree, it’s worthwhile to calculate how much money you’ll be spending. At my previous university, I was forking out a ton of money to do a double degree.

Consider what you want to do then look at your options. The uni you start at may not be the uni you finish at. I managed to find a uni where they offered what I wanted in a single three-year degree rather than a five and half year double degree. It halved how much I would be spending on my career choice. Heck yeah.

Uni Expenses

Think about how long it takes you to travel to uni. Whether it’s by car, train or bus, have you considered much money you’re spending on getting there and back? Add in food, coffee and anything else you need to get through the week, it’s a hefty amount.

I broke down my expenses and honestly, I wanted to cry. RIP my bank account. This was what an average week looked like with four days at uni:

  • Petrol: $60
  • Parking: $13 per day
  • Food: $15 a day
  • Alcohol instead of doing assessments: $$$

Given the fact I live in the middle of nowhere, commuting for me was always going to be a bit pricey. But a uni with more public transport available cut my expenses by at least half because I wouldn’t have to worry about parking anymore. It honestly saved my bank account from more heartbreak.

Graduate Options

You’re probably ignoring the fact you’ll need to find a job when you graduate. Why think about something so far away? Thing is, uni is the perfect time to be fleshing out your resume and gaining skills in your prospective career choice. Some things to consider: Does your current uni offer internships? Are there graduate events with real industry workers coming to chat?

Also, most unis will allow credit accreditation from your previous uni so you won’t have to do all the subjects in your new course. Just make sure you follow up on the paperwork and hand it in on time. Seriously – do it.

Put Yourself First

It’s daunting to think about leaving your friends behind and start anew. It might feel like you’re Cady in Mean Girls, but uni is a completely different game to high school. No one cares about whether you were popular or cool or part of the volleyball team.

Uni is there for you to discover yourself and figure out what the heck it is you want to do. If you happen to switch unis, that’s okay. Go for it! Your friends will understand and love you just the same. This decision is for you, and you alone.

Sofia Casanova is a cappuccino enthusiast with a love for words. When she’s not studying for her Public Communication degree at UTS, she’s glued on her Twitter feed (@sofiaecasanova) or attempting to be aesthetic for her bookstagram (@theliterarycasanova).