Whether you’re a fresher or final year, here is our guide to both the obvious and unusual parts of uni life, and the items you’ll need to embrace them all! So in true reality television style – “And in no particular order”…
Arguably a student’s main priority (along with studying of course) is to meet new people, and hopefully gain lifelong friends from university. Of course that’s much easier said than done, but the key thing to remember, especially for Freshers, is that you are all in the same boat! Those nerves and apprehension that you’re feeling now are completely natural, and just remember, everyone else just wants to make new friends too! Phrased in the cheesiest way possible: ‘just say hello and watch friendships grow!’ The friends you make at university will help you enjoy the most amazing moments and also get you through those tough times ahead.
- An alarm!
Seen by some as a student’s worst enemy, but you really do need to learn to love the alarm! Of course, an active social life is a huge part of the university experience, but those 9am lectures and seemingly-immediate deadlines aren’t going to disappear. If you get into the habit of setting a regular sleep pattern, with the same wake-up time every day, other aspects of university life will seem a lot easier. Don’t be a snooze specialist!
- A laptop (Sweater sold separately)
Phones and Tablets may now be the go-to piece of technology, but for most students the humble laptop will still be a key piece of kit for your studies. It is definitely worth investing some hard earned cash, or the savior that is your student loan, into a laptop if you don’t already have one. (Or if you’re lucky enough, some courses here at Coventry lend you one for your studies, and then gift it to you when you graduate). Essays, programmes, presentations, and funny cat videos should always be at your fingertips!
- Motivating playlists
If, like me, music is the answer to most things, then the power of a good playlist is essential for university survival. There are so many programs to help you create playlists now; Spotify, iTunes, Tidal, Deezer, Windows Media Player (remember that?) that your favourite tunes are now more accessible than ever. So, no matter what the circumstance, there can always be a playlist to help you along the way.
- A good cookbook
*STUDENT STEREOTYPE ALERT!* Students do not know how to cook! As broad as that may appear, a common assumption (and admittedly a regular problem) is that students embarking on living away from home for the first time do not have the greatest of culinary skills. To make this learning curve that bit easier, there is an abundance of online sites, social media pages, or good old-fashioned cookbooks aimed at students. One of our favorites is ‘Nosh For Students’.
- Family time
It’s easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of student life, so let’s take a minute to acknowledge how important it is to link up and stay connected with family. Your new friends and fantastic tutors are obviously great people to talk to and be around, but there’s no one quite like a family member or loved one to share your thoughts and time with. Soppy as it may seem, that connection to family can have a major positive affect on university life.
- To explore!
Let’s not forget just how many facilities, events and places for advice are available around campus. A common tendency is to just stick to who, what, and where you know; but the campus has so much more to offer than assignments and charging points. Don’t be afraid to go to new buildings, and look out for up and coming events for new societies. These which could provide you with free stuff the chance to meet new people. Our Coventry University Facebook and Twitter pages will keep you right up to date ;).
- Fancy dress diversity!
The blue smurf seems to be the standard fancy dress of choice on student night outs, but we believe that creativity is the key. A strong fancy dress portfolio will help you stand out from the blue crews, and will mean you’re always prepared to get fully involved in this fun element of student life. The Internet is full of hilarious new (and cheap!) costume ideas, so there’s no excuse to be blue!
- To work really, really hard.
All tips and attempts at humour aside; probably the most obvious and important university survival element is simple – work hard. University will be some of the best years of your life for so many reasons, but your degree is the prize at the end of it, and it takes a lot of hard work to win. The balance between work and play is not the easiest of tasks, but combining all these previous elements with good old hard graft will ensure the ultimate university survival!