Going to university can be described as a bittersweet feeling. We all feel like we are accomplishing something while we also prepare for a huge change in our lives. It’s okay if you’re scared of what’s about to come. Every university student feels anxious at some point during their academic career.
As a third year student I frequently get asked questions regarding what to do on your first day, classes, schedules, notes, deadlines or extracurricular activities. Whether you feel lost, anxious or prepared this piece will help you get an idea of what you should expect from your first year of university.
As “freshers" we all worry about certain topics that are crucial during our first year.. That’s why you’ll find everything regarding those topics in different sections: Classes, timetables, exams and deadlines, library tricks, extracurricular activities, friendships and free time.
Classes: To be honest, first day of university can be overwhelming. Don’t stress and take it as it comes. Take a look around, and try to meet new people! As time passes by you’ll also learn how to take notes. Some people have to write everything down others just take notes with their laptops. The best method is the one that actually works for you!
Timetables: At first it will feel like an impossible mission to learn your schedule. I assure you it will take time, but you can do it. Your first day of class is the perfect occasion to check if your timetable is correct. Go through all your subjects so you know for sure they don’t coincide. Also, during your first week you usually have the opportunity to attend a few classes so if you don’t like any of them you can change them up. Don’t miss out on that, you never know!
Exams and deadlines: It will come naturally: you’ll develop time management skills. Trust me, students are blessed with this innate skill. Don’t be scared. Just be aware of your deadlines and exam dates and plan ahead so you have time to do everything you’d like.
Library tricks: Going to the library during exams is like The Hunger Games. I’ll give you three tips: get there early to get a good seat; find a place where you can plug your laptop, phone, etc. and get yourself a nice lectern if you’re going to be using books (your neck will appreciate it in the near future!).
Extracurricular activities: Soccer, drama club, basketball, hiking, debate club…whatever you want you’ll find it. And if not, create a club yourself!
Friendships and free time: This topic is probably one of the most popular. School and childhood friends are great but the ones you make at university are too! Don’t be scared of interacting with other people, you’ll soon find a group of people you’ll call your friends by the end of the month. It’s important to study but it’s also essential to go have fun, attend concerts, theatre plays and other events with your friends. Don’t get too obsessed with university and let loose! Your first year is one you’ll never forget!