Here are six of the best support organisations for international students studying in the UK.
Great British Magazine
Great British Mag is a digital magazine that helps students interested in studying in the UK decide whether it is the best place for them and provides insights about life as a student in the UK. The team behind the magazine are former international students so they cover topics that they know are of interest and helpful to overseas students.
The UK Council for International Student Affairs (UKCISA) operates a helpline, lobbies the Government on issues affecting international students and runs a student ambassador programme. These students are international themselves and one of their jobs is to help UKCISA create training days for universities and other organisations so they can continually improve how they support international students.
UKCISA is especially helpful if you are looking for support regarding government guidelines and regulations, such as changes in visa requirements.
The Student Minds website is the UK's biggest website on student wellbeing and mental health, sharing student experiences of mental health difficulties and resources to improve it. Their resources include links to charities, helplines, running groups on campus and producing articles giving tips on staying mentally healthy at university.
The British Council and their Study UK website offers practical information and insight on UK education for international students. They can help you understand the process of applying to university in the UK, inform you of scholarships available and also direct you to approved agents in your country that you can use to help you apply to a UK university.
The Student Union
A students’ union is independent of the university and in most cases is affiliated to the National Union of Students (NUS). Their main purpose is to represent the interests of all students on a local and national level. Run by existing and former student volunteers, their officers can help support you if you experience discrimination or need help. They will usually have officers dedicated to LBGTQ, interfaith and international students, amongst others.
See your on-campus student union office or visit their website for more information on the support they offer.
Your university’s international office
All universities have an office dedicated to international students. The special team can provide advice on immigration, employment, funding, academic and personal matters. This department may also coordinate activities and events for international students. The international office will have a separate page, or even a separate website where they list all their services and how you can get in touch with them.