At this moment I have my blog, Facebook, Twitter and Reddit/r/aww open as tabs – completely guilt free. This can only mean one thing: I have finished my first year (read 8 months – where is my nine grand even going?!) at University. I’m already mourning the loss of the trusty motto ‘first year doesn’t count’ and missing the feeling of student life stretching endlessly ahead of me. The fun ends here. That is, after my four and a half month long summer break…
So as well as all the enlightening life lessons I’ve been learning on my course from y’know, medieval literature and stuff, I feel like I’ve found out a few new things just by being a student. So here are five things I’ve learnt at University so far:
There are enough hours in the day
Or at least, there are when you have eight contact hours a week (again – nine grand?!). University is a period when all the segments of your life pie-chart are expanding (bear with me I’m an English student, metaphors before maths). I’ve realised though that, at least for your first year, there is enough pie to go round. You can find the time to work hard, play hard and even get the washing up done. It will be busy, but it will be worth it.
Flat shoes are your best friends
Before coming to university, heels were as much a part of a night out as the music or the alcoholic beverages. This year however, I have worn heels for a grand total of two nights. I’ve realised that frankly I would rather sport the frumpy stumpy look than spend what is meant to be a night of laughs and dancing shifting my weight from one foot to another and longing for my bed. Don’t get me wrong I love a good pair of heels for other occasions, but for a night out nobody wants to keep going to the loo just to have a sit down.
Make sure your future self will thank you
University life can sometimes feel like a bubble, floating for three years while the real world outside only exists in theory. Sure, make the most of this luxury, but also bear in mind that one day the bubble will pop, you will graduate, and the last thing you want is to have tumble weed rolling across your CV. Whilst still enjoying the pre-working-world life, try and plan ahead to make your life easier in the future.
It’s never too late to make friends
During the first few weeks of Uni, it’s completely acceptable to make a friend by them passing you loo roll under the cubicle door, or in the queue at the laundrette. However by around November, there is a general feeling that the time for spontaneous bonding has been and gone, groups have formed, and people have shut off to the idea of making new pals. It took me a while to realise though that this didn’t have to be true. I’m still making new friends now – and often the friendships that form later on in the year end up being closer than the people you thought were going to be your life-long chums during freshers but who have since slipped off your radar.
There is no one-size-fits-all for student life
It’s easy to feel like there is only one way to be a student – you have to binge drink, your flat has to be like your family and you have to spend half your time napping. For a lot of people, they tick all the boxes, but there are also a tonne of people who make up their own boxes, or for whom things work out a little differently. So if your student life is more Big Bang Theory than Fresh Meat, fear not, your time at University can be anything you want it to be.