May is here already. Sorry, what? I know, right. So that means that year-twelvers are starting to look at/apply for university or TAFE courses and some adults may be looking at mid-year university entry. This was me three years ago- oh lord, I am getting old- and all that hard work, late nights and binge-stress eating paid off because I was accepted into my (at the time) dream degree!
As my first blog post on the Student Sharehouse I thought I would entertain you guys with tips and typically awkward scenarios I experienced in my first year of uni. My first year of uni was a struggle for me, unlike high-school. University is a completely different experience. Let’s get the ball rolling!
O-week is essential!
Orientation week. This will be your first taste of the university institution. Even though it’s not technically a teaching week, it offers loads of seminars on academically important things like report-writing and referencing, but also has hundreds of university clubs waiting for you to sign up! Plus, you may even get some free merch, like a t-shirt, academic calendar and stationary! O-week is so helpful, so register for as many events as possible!
University sporting clubs and academic societies are worth it!
If your anything like me, you might be hesitant to join anything that’s not your usual classes because you might want to figure out the whole balancing classes and assignments thing. One thing I regret is not registering for a club. Uni isn’t just about study, the sporting clubs are a great kind of relief from the academic side of uni, whilst the academic clubs are a great starting point in meeting industry professionals and other likeminded people! This year, I’m apart of clubs, but do it in your first year also! If you find you cant handle the extra heavy, you can easily pull out.
Wanna desperately ‘fit in with the crowd’? Get a Macbook.
No word of a lie. Imagine this: your sitting in your lecture hall, you look over your shoulder behind you and there are 100+ students with the glowing apple logo on the lid of their open laptops. Although, you may want to figure out what computer will be best for you. For example, for design students MacBook’s are the go, but for Business students any other laptop will do. It’s all about personal preference!
Figure out a way of studying that actually suits you
At university, you have about 3 hours per class of actual contact hours, this is not much at all to learn everything you need to learn for the week, extra independent study is required and it’s your responsibility to map it all out. Also, some students take notes in lectures on laptops, some write them out. For me, writing works better, I tend to grasp more information. Both ways have downsides. Chances are you’ll get a whole lot more distracted with a laptop what will all the free wifi; I’m talking about Facebooking instead of taking notes. With writing notes, you may miss some important information on a lecture slide that you cant write down because you weren’t fast enough.
Take your own food, that stuff is expensive!
Just like your degrees, pretty much everything is expensive at uni, including food! Sure, go ahead and buy $13 nachos from Guzman y Gomez but do that everyday and see how much savings you’ll have. Although, I’ll admit that the coffee prices aren’t that bad – at QUT anyway. But again, if you buy a coffee every morning your on campus, you’ll have spent around $300 – $500 on coffee in one semester. QUT has microwaves at literally every campus in nearly every building, so heating up food you’ve bought from home isn’t a problem.
Ew, public transport.
Make sure you have a train and bus timetable or access to the internet at all times. There’s nothing worse than sprinting from uni to the train station to find that your train literally just left the station and you have to wait another 30 minutes. Trust me. Also, make sure your GoCard’s are tip topped up! Again, there’s nothing worse than rocking up to the train or bus station 5 minutes before your train/bus leaves but you find you have no money on the damn thing, so you miss your mode of transportation again!
Get familiar with your university’s assignment submission policy
Sleeping, zombie-looking students
Brace yourself. Near mid-semester and the final exam period 99% of students look like a mess; myself included. You’ll encounter coffee-filled zombie students, sleeping library students or energy drink induced students that will eventually fall from that high and be very unattractive humans. It’s the truth, embrace it, you’ll probably be one of them.
Wear comfy shoes, don’t be one of those high heel wearing, blister getting girls.
Attention girls, probably the most important point in this whole post. It’s the definition of hell if you wear the wrong shoes.
Eat well, sleep well, drink plenty of water, have fun and meet new people. You’ll be fine!