Student life at University of South Wales: A blend of academics and adventure

By Madie Howard• Last updated: Feb 16, 2024
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Picture the scene: your plane lands at Cardiff Airport and your taxi pulls up simultaneously. It has been arranged for you by the USW arrival service and there is no fee to pay!

The taxi driver asks you why you have come to pursue your higher education goals in the UK. You tell them all about the University of South Wales student life that awaits you and you receive a warm smile back.

Edvoy helps international applicants understand that their academic journey at USW isn't just about attending lectures and hitting the books; it's about embracing opportunities socially too.

The University of South Wales student life is all about finding your tribe, exploring new interests, and growing both inside and outside the lecture theatre. 

It is also about hitting the sandy beach in your downtime! USW is lauded for being surrounded by beaches - with 10 coastal cliff views close to the campus.

South Wales is generally known for its scenery and sea views, which have been proven to aid mental health and concentration. 

This is just one of the numerous selling points of studying at the University, however, there is much more to be explored!

University of South Wales student accommodation: your home away from home

Finding the right place to live is crucial to enjoying your university experience. The University of South Wales student accommodation options are varied to suit the diverse needs of students.

There is on-campus accommodation across its Treforest, Cardiff, and Newport campuses, with most first-year students choosing to live in residence halls.

Residence halls are a good place to start the international university experience as the close-knit feel of a university hall offers effortless socialisation opportunities.

Many of the friends a student makes whilst living in shared accommodation stick with the international student through their university experience and beyond. 

The university offers an accommodation guarantee to first-year UK and international applicants who have applied for an undergraduate or postgraduate part-time/full-time course at USW. 

Accommodation is usually provided to international students in the USW Halls of Residence, but sometimes it is arranged with one of the private accommodation providers in Cardiff or Newport, and it is always allocated in line with the terms of the university’s allocation policy. 

Campus life at the University of South Wales refers to being well looked after by the university, as bills are included in the rent payment at the university halls.

The accommodation areas often host social events, workshops, and activities, making meeting people and forming connections easy. 

The University can help students with finding private rental accommodation off-campus too, which international students tend to do in later years of study. Nervous students need not worry: everybody makes friends at the university of South Wales due to the many societies and its integrative campus!

It is so much easier than you think - the large number of international students at USW equates to numerous opportunities for socialisation via faith and interest clubs organised by the student union. 

From the African society to the Music club, there are many fun ways to spend an evening outside of your halls of residence in the joyous campus of USW.

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Get to your classroom within walking distance of your halls of residence!

From on-campus options that keep you close to your lectures and libraries to off-campus residences that offer a taste of the local life, there's something for every preference and budget. 

As far as the university is concerned, the focus is on creating a supportive community and making the transition to university life smoother for everyone. That is why the University of South Wales's accommodation options are so varied. 

The University of South Wales (USW) is considered a favourable destination for students due to its comprehensive range of courses - 500! Not to mention its modern facilities and supportive learning environment. 

It offers a variety of undergraduate and postgraduate courses across several disciplines, including business, engineering, creative industries, and health sciences. 

The university is known for its practical approach to learning, with many courses designed in collaboration with industry professionals to ensure students gain the skills and experience valued by employers. 

Perhaps that’s a major contributor as to why 95% of USW graduates go on to employment or further study within six months of graduation. 

Mental health matters at the University of South Wales

When international students first arrive in the UK, they naturally feel nervous about fitting in and managing their mental health on top of practical matters. 

There is a strong culture of mental health support in the UK, so reaching out is encouraged just to ensure a student’s overall well-being is maintained while studying in a foreign environment. 

Students can arrange a Mental Well-being appointment whenever they feel as though they would benefit from using the free service. 

Student life at the University of South Wales is far from lonely, however, as the campuses at USW are buzzing with energy, offering a variety of clubs, societies, and events. 

Engaging in these activities not only breaks the monotony of studies but also helps in building lifelong friendships and essential soft skills. 

The University of South Wales campus life is designed to be a well-rounded overall experience, ensuring students are ready for the world beyond university walls.

Academic Support and Resources

At the heart of the University of South Wales student life is unparalleled academic support.

The university prides itself on offering resources that cater to a diverse student body.

From state-of-the-art libraries and tech labs to study support sessions and career counselling, USW is committed to ensuring you have the tools and guidance needed to excel academically.

The student-to-staff ratio is 14:1 at USW - a much smaller number than at other universities around the world!

Class sizes are kept deliberately low to ensure personalised support can be given to international students who need it, and everyone benefits from fully understanding the work at hand.

All staff are trained in diversity and inclusion, meaning people from all walks of life feel comfortable asking their lecturer for further clarification or extensions, when needed. 

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Exploring Wales: an extension of student life

University of South Wales student life isn't confined to campus boundaries. 

Wales offers breathtaking landscapes, historical sites, and a welcoming community. Students are encouraged to explore the natural beauty and cultural richness of Wales, to make their university experience even more memorable. 

Wales officially has more castles per square mile than any other country in the world, making it particularly attractive to students who enjoy history or the feel of living in a period drama setting!

The roaming hills and sandy beaches enable students to enjoy a day out and go hiking when they are not studying: activities that are not available to students at city universities! 

University of South Wales student accommodation: a key to social life

A significant aspect of the University of South Wales student life is the social scene.

Living with peers from around the world, you'll find yourself immersed in a melting pot of cultures, with the chance to share what makes your particular culture unique at events.

The Immigration & International Student Advice team organises the University’s International Welcome Programmes, arranges various social events throughout the year and runs the Global Assistants project.

The Global Assistants project provides the chance for international students to enhance their employability skills via volunteering opportunities that typically take place on a weekend via the University of South Wales.

The International Welcome Programme is designed to ensure international students know their place at the university is valued equally to domestic students and to thwart any potential ‘culture shock’ experiences with university support.

USW's commitment to international students is also evident in its global community, welcoming students from over 120 countries. 

Many students choose to get involved as members of the student union, representing student interests and making democratic decisions on the future of the university community as a group.

This in turn helps to build confidence and networking skills, the likes of which will be useful for employability.

This diverse environment not only enriches the student experience through cultural exchange but also prepares graduates for the global job market. 

International students can also receive visa advice and academic and language support to ensure a smooth transition to studying in the UK.

Most students choose to take the short train ride (around 20 minutes) to the major capital city Cardiff for a night out on the town.

Known for being one of the most fun and varied nightlife spots in the UK, Cardiff has many student bars and clubs, such as Revolution Bar, major cocktail chain Be At One, and The Live Lounge, with student discounts and happy hours. 

The University of South Wales campus life offers a dynamic and supportive environment that goes beyond academics. 

USW's campuses are equipped with modern facilities and are situated in some of the most scenic and vibrant parts of Wales, offering a safe and welcoming setting for students from around the globe. 

Furthermore, the university provides tailored support services for international students, ranging from visa and immigration advice to academic and language support, ensuring a smooth transition to studying in the UK.

The University of South Wales (USW) presents a compelling choice for international students as it offers a blend of high-quality education, cultural diversity, and strong employability prospects.

Will you be choosing a new life in South Wales?

Our journey through the University of South Wales concludes, revealing it as more than an academic institution; it's a lively community fostering student growth. The University stands out for those desiring an education that blends challenging studies with a vibrant student experience, offering a path as enriching as the outcome.

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Student life at the University of South Wales
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