Support Services at University You Should Be Aware Of | Insider Guides

Support Services You Might Not be Aware of at University (But Definitely Should be!)

support services university

This article is sponsored by Murdoch University

University can be as challenging as it is rewarding, and access to high-quality support is the foundation of a fantastic university experience. Keeping up-to-date with available services will guarantee that your student life is as healthy, safe and enjoyable as possible.

Orientation

Orientation is an essential part of any student experience. Lasting between one and two weeks, orientation (also known as O-Week), gives students the opportunity to partake in welcome events, make new friends, discover the campus and explore support services on offer at their new university. Orientation programs are designed to help new students transition into life on campus and create connections with peers and staff.

Some universities, such as Murdoch University in Perth, WA, even offer a free airport pick-up service when you first arrive, making your first journey in Australia as smooth and straightforward as possible.

Learning support

From tutorials to career mentoring, university is designed to support you through an amazing learning experience. Universities across Australia even provide specialised learning support for students looking for extra guidance and resources. If you need help with an assignment, extra tutoring, peer support, library access, English language lessons or if you would just love to improve your grades, make sure to check out your university’s learning support services.

Health services

The range of health services provided by universities will help you maintain your physical and emotional wellbeing whilst studying. Many campuses offer access to general practitioners, nurses, vaccinations, and even specialist facilities such as dental and physiotherapy. Coping with the pressures of university can be overwhelming, especially for students adjusting to life away from home; professional, confidential counselling services offered by universities will ensure that your mental health is prioritised. Many of these services are free, and have been made available online during the COVID-19 pandemic to keep you healthy and happy whilst in isolation. 

Accommodation

If you’re looking for a home that offers a great social life, proximity to university, study facilities and excellent security, campus accommodation is a perfect option for you. Student housing is an ideal service for international students needing support in transitioning to university life in Australia; purpose-built student housing can help you build community, learn from supportive staff and feel safe at all times.

Financial assistance

University fees and living costs can make full time study a challenge for anyone struggling financially; for those needing financial aid or advice, universities have a range of schemes and support services to make student life more accessible. Each university offers a selection of scholarships, grants and loans aimed at specific circumstances, including assistance for international students. Financial aid services can also give you information on accessing government welfare and housing/rent assistance. Various universities also provide mentoring on managing money, covering skills such as budgeting, handling a credit card and tracking spending. 

If you’ve been affected financially by the COVID-19 pandemic, many institutions are currently offering assistance to ensure that all students maintain access to university. Financial initiatives, including Murdoch University’s Student Support Package, offer emergency funding for those ineligible for government assistance, IT bursaries and equipment for remote study, and funding for international students to purchase grocery essentials. If you have purchased items or services which can no longer be used due to COVID-19, such as parking permits, contact your university to organise a refund or extension on the date of expiration.

Legal services

Unknown to many students, universities across Australia offer low cost or free legal advice. Whether you need assistance as an employee, tenant or for other personal affairs, qualified lawyers are available to support you through any legal matters you may encounter whilst studying.  Legal services can be especially useful to international students looking for advice on working and housing rights. 

Spirituality

Faith is the cornerstone of many students’ lives, and universities across Australia are committed to ensuring that all spirituality is included and supported on every campus. Religious clubs and societies, prayer rooms, meditation classes and other spaces for the discussion of beliefs and values allow you to stay connected to your personal faith whilst pursuing your education. 

Safety and security

Maintaining safe campuses is a top priority for Australian universities. Each university is equipped with security services to help you feel comfortable whilst studying, including emergency assistance and first aid, identification of valuables, drug and alcohol awareness information and security escorts for students leaving campus after dark. Sexual Assault & Harassment services provide education on inappropriate sexual behaviour and support for students reporting an incident. These services encourage students who have experienced or witnessed an assault or harassment to reach out for help in investigating, handling and recovering from the incident.

Disability and inclusion

No student experience should be impacted by a disability, mental health issue, injury, learning disorder or illness; disability and inclusion support ensures equal access to high-quality education for all students. Support includes an adjusted study plan focused on your needs, ongoing assistance and advocacy, and extends to those in the position of primary caregiver for someone with a disability.

Clubs and societies

Building a community at university is integral to a fun and healthy study journey, and joining a club is the perfect way to meet friends whilst getting involved in a hobby or contributing to a cause. Clubs and societies offer support to students through a range of niche activities and groups, helping you engage with like-minded people whilst doing what you enjoy. 

Careers/Employment

Deciding your career path can be a daunting and confusing process. Individualised career support is designed to help you navigate the opportunities available to you and break down the skills required to reach your full potential. The one-on-one consultation offered by universities is tailored to each student and covers important topics such as creating a resume and preparing for an interview. At Murdoch University, for example, their Careers and Employability Centre offers resume and job search skills workshops, individual counselling sessions, and plenty of internship and vacation opportunities.

Looking for a university in Australia that goes above and beyond? Murdoch University will support you every step of the way – from accepting your offer to arriving in Perth, throughout your studies and beyond. The University has a 5-star ranking and is in the top 20% of universities in Australia for student support, overall experience and teaching quality according to The Good Universities Guide 2020. Plus, you’ll have access to academic support, financial assistance, career advice, counselling, medical services and much more. For more information, head to the Murdoch University website.



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