Wednesday, 25 March 2015
Things I learnt at University
This is both a post on things I learnt and advice. Everyone said it would be a massive learning experience, but I never knew how much it would be until I experienced it. A lot of these things I probably should have known already but hey ho, we progress at different rates.
Freeze bread - if you don't make sandwiches all the time, then bread will last a long time in the freezer, use the defrost button on the toaster.
Teachers expect participation - do whatever you need to do to be alert for class, go to bed early, drink coffee, if you aren't alert in class you won't remember anything, and you will come to write your essays and think 'did they even cover this?' yes, they did, you just weren't paying attention.
Wine goes off - Who knew? If it tastes sour, its off. 2 - 3 days is about right. Also, if you're sharing space with others who like wine, get everyone to chip in for a box of wine, cheaper and you get much more for your money.
Start Student Finance application early or you will regret it.
Watch your drink on a night out, everyone may seem friendly but that doesn't mean you shouldn't be careful. If you suddenly feel more drunk than you should be/hallucinate/ can't speak or move, tell your friends, tell the bar staff too, particularly if you are alone.
The only way to do an essay on time (to a good standard) is to start early - you have to trick yourself into thinking the deadline is closer than it is, preferably 2 days closer. If you don't there will be a lot of late nights and close calls.
Men are pigs just kidding, but if you're the type that likes to go out then you'll invariably meet a lot of seedy guys at clubs and the student bar. Don't feel bad rejecting them, if you're not feeling it then its not happening, and they'll have to deal with that.
Don't drink heavily if you have class the next day because guess what, you're going to wake up feeling like shit, and you won't go to class.
Do the reading but not all of it, especially if you're on a Literature course because there will be a lot of reading. Read most of the books, missing the odd one won't hurt (unless you're aiming for a first) Pick your essay title as early as possible and focus on the reading for that.
Plan your essays this sounds like an obvious one but I still feel the need to say it. The planning is often the hardest part, get the plan out of the way on one day, start the essay the next day and finish it the day after. Leave time to proof read. Leave time to print it at the library if you don't have a printer.
Soak in the knowledge you are paying an extortionate amount of money to be in those classes, do the extra reading (sometimes) ask your teachers lots of questions. Don't be afraid to say 'I don't understand'.
Don't waste money - if you have a student loan, you need to keep reminding yourself that its not your money. Its a loan, that you will be paying back until you're 50, so spend it wisely. Occasional blow outs are fine, expected. If it gets the point where you can't eat its budget creating time.
You will meet good people, and bad - meeting like minded people is inevitable, not all of those will be 'good' people. Some will take advantage of you, be rude, pretentious, and have delusions of grandeur. You learn a lot about people at university.
It actually is about finding yourself which would sound ridiculous to me, pre-university. But since graduating I realized that it was the perfect environment to think more about who you are, what your values are, the things you're willing to accept and the things you shouldn't.