While my secondary school teachers did the absolute best they could to make sure I made it to university. I can’t help but feel like I wish I had been more prepared? I know a lot of you are currently receiving offers for university courses and getting your applications in. So this post is dedicated to outlining all the things I wish I had known before I embarked on my journey to university.
University is just the start
I thought that university was my golden ticket to success. If I had all degree I could get any job I wanted. It would open up a world of doors for me that would be locked without that precious degree certificate. Oh boy, I was so f*cking wrong. Excuse my French. I wish I had been enlightened more about the current state of the job market before I started my degree. It would have massively helped me make a more informed decision about the degree I chose and what modules I picked.
Your degree is not the end… it’s just the beginning. There is so much more work to do to get to where you wanna be. A degree isn’t enough anymore.
Be prepared for the stress
I was not ready for the workload. It crippled me. I used food to get me through coursework. Rewarding myself with chocolate during essays to get to the word counts required. I was so mentally unprepared to feel like the entire world was on top of my head for twelve weeks straight and as a result I piled on a lot of weight during university. It’s hard, really hard and the better you manage your work and time the better.
You don’t need to splash out on textbooks
In the beginning of my degree I spent so much money buying books. I kept thinking I needed all the books off the reading list for all my modules. I really didn’t. All the compulsory texts were available in the library for free and if you got there early enough there was always copies available. Not to mention the internet is a wonderful thing. So many books were available online without any need to purchase them.
Have an idea what career path you want to follow, before you start.
I made the huge mistake of rushing into my degree before knowing what job I wanted. I was making a decision to benefit a career I didn’t even know I wanted? Thinking I would just figure it out along the way and this was such a huge mistake. Especially if the degree you choose is directly linked to particular career paths. It’s really important to know where you wanna go next.
Prepare for life post-graduation
Perhaps more than anything, I wish that before I start university that I knew how hard life was going to be the second I graduated. I couldn’t wait for it to be over but now I want my stability back. From the day you finish the council are on your back for council tax, you get the beautiful pleasure of explaining to everyone you meet that you are an unemployed graduate. That student overdraft safety net you have been relying on for the past 3 years is going to vanish. You are left completely on your own to survive stripped bare of all the crutches that kept your head above water.
I hope this post is helpful to anyone starting university this September or to anyone currently studying. Feel free to ask any questions in the comment section below!