As I’m starting my second year of Uni in about 2 weeks time, today I thought I’d write a short post about my top 10 tips for surviving the first year of Uni life away from home.
You’re a student, so you’re going to have to tighten those purse strings for the next few years..! Uni life is very expensive, and whether you like it or not, budgeting is one of those horrible things you will have to do. Make lists and keep track of your weekly spending so you won’t end up crawling to the next payday with only 42p in your account!
2) Get yourself a Netflix subscription
A Netflix subscription is basically an essential for Uni. You might think you’ll be out and about everyday or too busy studying to have a Netflix marathon, but there’s a high probability you’ll be suffering some serious hangovers throughout the year – and Netflix is perfect for those day-long lie-ins, or moments where you really need to relax after a long day of lectures.
3) Don’t sign up for hundreds of societies
When you go to your Freshers’ Fair for the first time, you’ll be drawn in by loads of societies begging for your membership. But no matter how tempting they are, just remember that you’re not going to want to fill every evening with a different training session or club night – especially when exams and assignments begin to loom. Try to restrain yourself and only pick clubs you will definitely love attending throughout the year.
4) Teach yourself some basic cooking skills
This one is a bit of a no-brainer. Cooking is an essential skill at Uni – you can’t live off McDonalds and Chinese takeaways forever! You don’t have to be a Jamie Oliver in the kitchen, but it’s worth knowing a few basic pasta or pie recipes to get you through the year. You’ll also be saving money by relying on your own cooking instead of buying expensive fast food and ready meals. It’s a win-win!
5) Get organised and revise early on
This is one tip you’ll wish you had taken on board when you find yourself pulling all-nighters in the library just before a big assignment is due. It’s worth topping up revision notes and testing yourself throughout the year so you aren’t in a mad panic in the short weeks leading up to exams. Flash cards and online tests are particularly useful… I’m not suggesting you revise in every speck of free time you have, but if you find yourself with an hour or two, spend some time reading through notes and re-watching lecture Powerpoints. You can thank me later!
6) Don’t Panic!
Arguably the most important tip – don’t panic! You will make friends. You will find the correct lecture hall. You will have fab roommates. Just remember that every Fresher is in the same situation as you. You aren’t alone! Every other student you come across will be feeling exactly the same worry and panic as you, but remain calm and everything will fall into place! Just put yourself out there and you’ll find yourself with new friends in no time.
7) Decorate your room
Decorating my room was the best thing about Freshers’ Week for me! I used FreePrints and Cheerz to print photos of family and friends to collage over my wardrobe – and I recommend these two apps if you want to do a similar thing with your own photos. I also piled hundreds of fluffy cushions on my bed and blu-tacked David Bowie posters on the walls… My record player took pride of place on the corner unit and I stacked the shelves high with Vinyl records and DVDs. Your Uni room is your own personal space, so fill it with things you love and make it as comfortable as possible. You’ll be living there for a whole year, so make sure you love it and want to spend time in it!
8) Get yourself a printer
The best £50 I spent this year was on a small, cheap printer for my room. This meant that I could print off my assignments and lecture slides whenever I wanted – and I wouldn’t have to make the trek to the library every time I had finished a new piece of work or had a photo I wanted a hard copy of. If your University is anything like mine, you will be given a small yearly allowance of printing credits which will not go very far at all. It’s worth investing in your own printer if you want to print notes, photos or lectures without limitation. If you’re worried about the costs of printing, schemes such as the “HP Ink Replacement Service” are available to keep costs low and make sure you never run out of ink!
9) Get yourself prepared for 3am fire drills…
Fire alarms are an awful but inevitable part of living in halls. The fire alarms are ridiculously sensitive and although most of the evacuations will be due to hairdryers or burnt toast, you can never be sure, so keep your phone, room keys, a pair of trainers and a woolly jumper by your bed – you’ll be glad you’ve got them when you’re standing outside for two hours in freezing cold temperatures.
10) Buy second-hand books and revision guides
There is absolutely no point in buying textbooks and guides at full price when you’re only going to be using them for one semester. Try using sites like Thriftbooks to find the content your looking for, or have a quick look at your University’s Facebook pages to see if past students are selling their old textbooks at reduced prices. However, if online or e-book versions of your texts are available, try finding them on Google Scholar or similar websites for free!
So these are my top 10 tips for surviving Level 1 at University! Do you guys have any tips to see me through Level 2?
Rihanna Ft. Drake –> Work