5 Things I’ve learnt since starting University

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:

Learnt at Uni

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.



  1. June 8, 2014 / 7:09 pm

    I love this, especially the last point! Too many people get hung up on the fact that their university experience isn’t THE university experience- pfft to that! Life is what you make of it.(ALSO: the hedgehog is adorable i want like five) xxx

    • Emily
      June 8, 2014 / 8:44 pm

      Thanks Nora! Definitely, there is no one way to be a student!
      P.S Hope you had a great birthday!

  2. June 8, 2014 / 11:23 pm

    Love your post but don’t get used to having enough time for everything! Final year = no sleep! Enjoy it while you can hun, I’m so gutted to be out of the ‘uni bubble!’ xxx

  3. Emily
    June 9, 2014 / 10:47 am

    Thanks you! And haha yeah can’t say I’m looking forward to it! I’ll just have to make the most of the time I have now!

  4. June 11, 2014 / 8:39 pm

    I have never been to Uni and the whole nine-grand seriously puts me off. I have realised that people who go Uni have the same chance of getting a job as a college graduate.

    Maybe in the future I will get my arse to Uni.

    This post was a great read btw 🙂

    Much Love,

    Lauren Nicole O’Hara

    • Emily
      June 11, 2014 / 9:43 pm

      Yeah It depends what you want to do, sometimes you need a degree sometimes you don’t!

      Thanks I’m really glad you liked it 🙂

  5. June 12, 2014 / 9:20 am

    Amen to wearing flats!! After the first few weeks I packed up 60% of my heels and sent them back home! I also got me a fancy tote bag so if I really needed to, I’d put the heels in the bag, wear the flats to walk or catch the bus, and then ‘mount’ the heels just before entering whatever venue!

    Totally agree with planning from the start too, time flies by so quickly and there are so many fabulous opportunities that will give any undergrad an edge. You have to find them though!

    Really liked this!

  6. Emily
    June 12, 2014 / 10:43 am

    That is such a good idea! Or you can get those role up flats that will fit in a handbag!

    Yeah It is really important to make the most of opportunities, I think employers are looking for far more than a degree these days.

    And thank you, really glad you liked it!

  7. July 2, 2014 / 10:07 pm

    I’ve just finished uni and I agree with all of these points! I really wish I did more work experience during my time so that would be my advice.

    I was definitely more Big Bang than Fresh Meat haha, I was a bit boring compared to everyone else but I enjoyed myself so that’s all that matters!

    I hope the rest of uni goes well for you sweet, since I did a similar course feel free to ask any questions about dissertation etc! 🙂

    Loved this post! xx

    • Emily
      July 3, 2014 / 8:45 am

      Yeah I really want to leave with some experience!

      As for being ‘boring’, I think it’s a shame that at uni there is often a narrow view of what makes you fun, and it always includes drinking. I mean, I like going out, but I also like having fun in plenty of other sober ways!

      Aw, thank you I will do! Glad you liked the post 🙂 xx

      • July 9, 2014 / 8:40 pm

        It’s definitely the best thing to do with your time, and it’ll be easier to get more experience afterwards 🙂

        Yes I get exactly what you mean! My halls were very loud and drunk and called me boring all the time, but I know I’m not boring at all! I just enjoy a good pizza more 😉 xx

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