7 Things I Learnt From My First Year At University




So I've come to the end of my first year at university and let me tell you that it's been quite the learning curve. From remembering to wash up the previous night's dishes through to dealing with an unnecessary council tax bill, first year has taught me a lot of things. And because I received my final assessment grade this morning (a cheeky first, thank you), it seemed fitting to write a post summarising some of those necessary, and not so necessary things I've learnt this year. 

 THE LIVING SITUATION CAN BE A BIT SHITTY


Living with people you've never met before is quite an experience. Boys leave the toilet seat up, people 'forget' to pay their portion of the bill, and more often than not, the kitchen will look like an absolute shithole. Oh, and how could I forget arguments over whose turn it is to buy toilet roll or bin bags? You'll bicker and argue and fall out because everything's new and you're finding your feet, but you have to remember that you are all finding your feet together. 

I lived with two guys for the first half of the year, and let me tell you what an experience that was. Privately renting and living outside of Brighton limited my social circle a little. Without a forty minute bus journey into town, the only people my age who I was able to see would be my two flatmates. So if you're in halls, you're quite lucky that there are people above and below you who you can go and see if you want some wider social interaction. Living with people who you wouldn't consider your closest friends can be pretty isolating, especially when everyone's running on their own agendas. But making time for the people closest to you can make even the shittest living situation seem better.


"WE'LL VISIT EACH OTHER AT UNI" IS THE BIGGEST LIE TO HAVE EVER BEEN TOLD

This point doesn't even need explaining. We've all said it to someone and then not followed through, leaving the meeting until everyone's back home for the holidays. But the truth is, organising a cross-country uni trip isn't easy on a student budget. Public transport is expensive, and unless your car's at uni, you're a little bit stuffed on more affordable ways to make it from Brighton to Newcastle. Sorry gals. 


BILLS ARE A PAIN IN THE ARSE


To begin with, bills are confusing. What's included in our rent? What's do we have to pay for? What date does the water need to be paid by? I had no idea about TV licenses. What the hell is council tax and why is there a bill sitting on my doormat demanding £1,500? The list goes on...

There are apps which can help you and your flatmates divvy up the bills, but to be honest, my flat just couldn't be bothered. We decided on the 'everybody takes one bill and we'll sort the money out later' approach, which has had its pros and its cons. In a smaller flat like ours, it works, but if you're in a flat of five, six or maybe even seven, using an app like Glide might be the better option. It's all a bit of a minefield but there are plenty of websites which offer advice and of course, your parents are a good source of knowledge on stuff like this.  

MONEY IS TIGHT. VERY TIGHT

It's no secret that money is tight at university. With a student loan that hardly covers your rent for the year *inserts upside down smiley emoji here*, students become pretty good at making their money last. That is unless you go on big nights out every week. But there's nothing that summarises the student life better than arriving at Lidl twenty minutes before closing time to snap up the already discounted bread, that's now going for 27p rather than 42p. They say it's going out of date tomorrow, but if I keep it in the freezer it'll be fine for weeks. 

Even with a part-time job, which can be pretty challenging to juggle alongside university life, money is still an issue. I chose to continue working back home during the holiday periods, and although it means I have a healthy amount to return to uni with, I still have to scrimp and save my way through each term. 


THERE'S NO PLACE LIKE HOME

Something I now know all too well is that there really is no place like home. Some of your friends are still there, your family are there, and everything back home is incredibly familiar to you. At university, you quickly learn to appreciate how brilliant, if not slightly dull, your hometown is and find yourself yearning to go back and visit. During the first term, I'll admit that I came home far too much. If I'm being honest, I've probably spent more time at home this year than I have in Brighton. There's nothing wrong with that (apart from the fact I'm still paying a stupid amount of rent for a room I'm not living in), but for me, being at home is just where I'm most comfortable. 


THERE'LL BE THAT ONE MODULE LECTURE THAT NOBODY GOES TO

There'll be one module that will see the course population drop like flies even before the first term has ended. There's always one compulsory module that nobody has any interest in, and as a result, by week seven, there's only four of you left. And it doesn't really stop there. People stop turning up to lectures after week two because if we're being honest, why the heck are we paying thousands of pounds for a couple of very basic powerpoint slides? Exactly. We'd all rather stay in bed and catch up later. 


"F THIS" WILL BECOME A PART OF YOUR EVERYDAY VOCAB

Whether it's because you've missed the bus, flopped in a module, or realised you've got no pan to cook dinner in, throwing a strop about it will become a daily occurrence. And constantly cussing at every possible opportunity comes part and parcel of that. Even the slightest inconvenience requires a muttering of disapproval. It's just how it is. 


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2 comments:

  1. I agree with everything you wrote. It's my first year of uni too.. + "F this" is in my everyday vocab now, haha! Have a wonderful day.
    // https://octoberslallu.blogspot.com

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  2. I've just finished my second year at uni, and I can't say it gets any better. Couldn't agree more with 'F this' haha, honestly can't remember the last day I went into Uni without them two words coming out of my mouth. I also definitely appreciate home more when I'm away! Loved this post! X

    https://eviejayne.co.uk

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