We know it can be a hard decision to pack up and move so we’ve put together some information about living and studying in Melbourne that we hope will help equip you with some key information and ease any apprehensions you may have about making the move.
When do I need to come?
The answer is quite simple – as soon as you can (at a minimum 2-4 weeks before classes begin). The more time you have to find and sort out your accommodation options, explore Melbourne and settle in, the better. You need a good home base in Melbourne, a place where you can study and relax.
How much money am I going to need?
Melbourne can be expensive but it doesn’t have to be. Depending where you want to live and your lifestyle choices you’ll need enough money to comfortably live so you can concentrate on other important things like getting through your JD studies. The University has a range of scholarships and financial aid options available to help those who need it.
More information on costs of living.
Choosing a place to live can be a tough decision for students arriving in Melbourne for the first time. ‘Where should I look?’ ‘How much will I pay?’ ‘How do I find a good share house?’ ‘Where is the nearest IKEA store?’ are just some of the questions our students ask.
Depending on what you are looking for there are a few options available to you.
The first thing you should do is check out Melbourne University’s Student Housing website. It has a stack of information on finding accommodation, tenancy advice and support services.
Residential colleges A number of residential colleges offer dedicated graduate spaces and additional academic support with an opportunity to connect with other grads from across the university along with a great lifestyle for students undertaking graduate study.
University of Melbourne colleges that specialise in graduate accommodation include: Graduate House, International House, Ormond College, Queen’s College, St Hilda’s College, Trinity College and Newman College.
All these colleges offer residential scholarships and many also have specific scholarships available for Law students.
Suburbs close to the University of Melbourne
For those looking into shared house accommodation or going it alone, it can be hard to know where to start. Melbourne is sometimes referred to as a city of villages, each with their own vibe and character. Although not an exhaustive list, here are six suburbs close to the University that might be worth considering.
Situated on the doorstep of the University of Melbourne Carlton is a sophisticated suburb full of restaurants and cultural hot spots. Walking distance to the campus.
Popular with students and professionals alike, with good coffee, restaurants and places to hear live music, a hot spot for creativity and great inner city lifestyle. Sydney Rd runs through this suburb and leads right to the campus by tram.
Yet another suburb that earned its hipster badge because of the vibrant cultural community. Fitzroy remains the stronghold of coffee, food and entertainment. Enough said. You could walk or bike from here.
A place to discover new restaurants and still be able to catch a live gig, Collingwood is carving out its own niche. Also has one of the original Farmer’s Markets once a month. Definitely a bike ride or public transport to campus.
Sought after by professionals and families. With a good selection of restaurants and cultural activities. Offers the perks of an inner city lifestyle without the inner city franticness. A longer bike ride or public transport.
A sleeper of an inner city suburb, North Melbourne provides a small community-like atmosphere on the doorstep of the famous Queen Victoria Market and the CBD. Easy to walk to campus from here.
The general rule is the closer to the CBD you are the more expensive it is to rent, the further out you go the cheaper it gets. Remember this is just a starting point and there are at least another 30 suburbs that should go on your list to consider. Popular websites such as Flatmate Finders, and realestate.com.au can be a useful place to start.
N.B. The closest IKEA store is in Richmond.
Getting around Melbourne
Melbourne is a relatively easy place to get around and it won’t take you long to work out where everything is and the best way to get to where you want to go.
With the inner city suburbs of Melbourne connected by dedicated bike lanes, it’s a relatively easy and cheap way to get around Melbourne.
Melbourne Law School is walking distance to Melbourne CBD and the thriving neighbourhoods of Carlton, North Melbourne, Brunswick and Fitzroy.
The University of Melbourne is a hub for public transport and is well serviced by trams and buses. Travelling on Melbourne’s public transport system (trams, buses and trains) requires a myki card.
You can buy and top up your myki at over 800 retailers including all 7-Eleven stores, at a myki machine located at all train stations and major tram and bus interchanges, on the public transport website and by calling 1800 800 007. Android users can also use myki mobile.
Simply top up your card before your journey and touch on and touch off at a myki reader as you travel. You don't need to touch off on a tram.
What to do in Melbourne?
Melbourne is reputed to be Australia’s cultural and culinary capital with lots on offer. Check out Melbourne Broadsheet for picks for anything culture, coffee, brunch, dinner and bars.
Activities and groups to join
With plenty of space around the campus, take the opportunity to get fit and explore your surrounds. If indoor exercise is more your thing or if Melbourne’s winter has set in, the Lincoln square gym is just around the corner.
MLS also has a rich culture of student societies to join, a great chance to meet like minded students and be involved in our community. These include the Law Students' Society, Global Law Students Association and Public Interest Law Network, just to name a few.
What to expect in your first two weeks at Melbourne Law School
Once you have settled into your new accommodation and explored the great city of Melbourne it’s time for the hard work to begin.
Your first introduction to the JD is through a compulsory two week intensive subject called Legal Method and Reasoning (LMR). LMR will not only help you start thinking like a lawyer, but it also provides an environment for all students to meet and mingle with each other. Many of the friendships and networks you develop in your LMR subject will remain throughout your law degree.
We look forward to welcoming you to Melbourne soon.
If you need further information or assistance please contact our friendly team.