Congratulations you have received your results and going to your first choice university (hopefully). If you don’t get into the university of your choice don’t be discouraged. Remember that you can still achieve greatness.
At this point, you are deciding on a colour scheme for your utensils and decorations for your room. If you were anything like me you were excited and slightly anxious about what university life might offer. Luckily for you as a former student, I am going to give you important advice so you make the most out of university.
First Year doesn’t count?
You may have heard first year doesn’t count…this is true. However, if you fail a lot of your modules you will have to do a year that does not count again. Take each year seriously remember it is an investment in your future and it is good to form good habits as early as possible. The good thing is if you don’t do as well as you want you can improve the next years at university.
Get your academics in check
Remember why you are at university! The transition can be difficult in terms of academic writing therefore if you find you are struggling talk to your tutors or find out if there are academic workshops at your university. Academic workshops can offer support in writing critically, grammar, exam preparation etc. At my university, you could get your work checked by the academic staff face to face or online (studiosity). Having access to “studiosity” for free was advantageous as I could receive feedback promptly. Another option I would also recommend is form study buddies, by doing so you can gain a different perspective or understanding of a topic you don’t understand.
- Microsoft Word has a feature where you can hear your work being read to you.
- If you haven’t already get Grammarly which checks your grammar.
This might be weird to say but at university, you get so excited about meeting new people and have all these expectations of people before you really get to know them. It is important to be social but before you start making permanent arrangements with people make sure you have met different people. Sometimes conflicts can happen and the people you think you know you don’t so be cautious. The first month you might really get along with people but this can fizzle out, it is normal. You can’t be expected to be friends with everybody you meet in the first few weeks of university. On a brighter note at university, you are going to meet people from all over the UK and internationally be prepared to meet great people and life-long friends.
From tea drinking to Harry Potter you are sure to find a society to suit you and meet people who have similar interests to you. Becoming a member of a society is also something to put on your CV. At University there should be at least one society that suits you so take the opportunity to join as they arrange various events within the year and you can network with others too.
I know people don’t like doing things for free but volunteering is a great way to gain certain skills relevant to your career goals. Find out from your Careers & Employability if there are opportunities relevant to your interests or career field. It can be weekly, monthly or one-off volunteering. I found volunteering helpful especially when I was looking for paid work as the skills are transferable. If your course does not have a placement element I would strongly recommend volunteering during your first or second year before you get too busy, it really is a rewarding experience and once again it can make your CV look certy.
This is one thing I deeply regret at the university. Consider the Erasmus exchange programme available at your university, it allows you to spend a semester or two in a different country studying and the best part is you can get funding to participate in the programme. Not only that but you are also able to get funding towards working abroad during summer (e.g camp counsellor in America) you may have to fill out a form of why you want to take part in a programme, provide costing documents and perhaps write about your experience to be used for the university. It is a great opportunity especially because these such programmes can be expensive on a student budget so why not do it for free?
- Find out as soon as possible what the requirements are for your university to get funding so you have time to prepare while studying.
Are your skills shown effectively on paper?
If this is one of the pieces of advice you take go to your career and employability centre. Mine was extremely helpful, you can get your CV, cover letter and other applications checked from experienced professionals where they offer advice on applying for specific jobs or placement applications. I have gained a lot of information on how to improve my CV and ensuring I effectively adapt it for each job I applied for. The career & employability team also have vacancies for jobs at the university and after graduation so it is worth looking at what is available within your local area if you’re looking for a job.
Your Mental Health Matters!
Uni can be stressful especially when you are away from your friends and family so do not suffer. Find out about student wellbeing services within your university where you can get support depending on your needs. Circumstances can occur so please make this known within your university and they should be able to offer help. Check out if your university offers group sessions where you can get support from staff and students alike. Please don’t feel you are alone.
A Uni Wife is Not Your Portion
This section is specifically for the ladies. Family and friends may have given you the illusion you will find your husband here. I can tell you this is not likely to happen. Taking on wifely duties for a guy is not gonna make that happen so don’t waste your time. Be aware there are fboys it is not a myth. Shine your eyes and use common sense, remember your worth queen.
LIVE YOUR BEST LIFE!
University might be some of the best years of your life so make sure you have a good time. Living your best life varies from person to person so make sure whatever you do you’re doing for yourself! Feel comfortable in whatever you’re doing and don’t feel pressured if you don’t go along with what others are doing if that is not you. You will find the right people that will love and appreciate you for who you are. You have yourself to answer to so have a good time, look and feel fleeky University is a rollercoaster so enjoy the ride!
I hope my advice helped and I wish you, new students, all the best in your university experience. Make the most out of everything because it does go really quick!
Any other university tips? Please comment below