Sunday, September 20th, 2015. With a car full of absolutely ridiculous items (seriously, why did I take a rolling pin to university?), my parents and I set off for Norwich to begin the next chapter of my life. 

I was 18 years old, straight out of school, and had signed up for three years at the University of East Anglia to study Politics. I had previously thought that I was ready for the situation I now found myself in, hurtling down the A47 with pretty much everything IKEA sold, but something wasn’t right.

As the big day approached, I had felt myself getting more nervous, and sat in the car, I could have been described as bricking it’. I didn’t have older siblings to tell me everything I needed to know before going to university and I remember thinking, I don’t even know what I don’t know” – ironically a feeling I was familiar with from a Maths AS Level exam one year prior. 


I began to feel physically unwell, and things didn’t improve when we stopped off for breakfast at a Toby Carvery my Dad had found en route. Your usual breakfast options were accompanied, in true Toby style, by Yorkshire puddings and gravy. Obviously, I wolfed a load of it down, believing it might calm my nerves and restless stomach.

Bad call.

My flatmates were not presented with the confident image I had carefully constructed in the group chat on Facebook, but rather a man near paralysed by fear and Yorkshire puddings. 

Needless to say, the move to university can be incredibly daunting and you may remember your own stories from when you left home for the first time. 

Young Christians heading to university are not immune to these worries, so the role of a loving, welcoming local church is truly invaluable. Whether sending your young people off to university or receiving new young adults studying in your city, the role of a local church is vital in providing a refuge for the next generation during a season of massive change. 

Think about any preparation’ training your church might have given you before. Preparation for marriage? Preparation for parenthood? Sadly, these major life changes can often be the time when people disconnect from church if they haven’t been offered the right support. 

A truly enormous (and maybe the first!) major life change a young person in 2021 can face is when making the transition to university. It’s important to ensure that young people in our churches are adequately prepared for the jump into the earliest stages of adulthood and independence. 

With their faith in their own hands, will they arrive at university ready to find a church to support them through all that lies in store for their degree? 

Fusion’s Student Linkup box contains multiple resources to help prepare young people for heading off to university. With books that can be completed in times of quiet reflection with a youth worker or other members of the youth group, students who have received boxes ahead of university gain a huge boost of confidence and encouragement ahead of the big day. 

If you know young people in your church who are heading to university soon, don’t hesitate to offer prayer, advice and practical support, so that they can head off with confidence into the adventures God has in store for them.

For more information on our Student Linkup boxes, head here.