Four pillars of first year

(Graphic by Lizzy Cook)

For first year students, university is a scary and exciting place because it means stepping towards the first page of our new chapter in life. With these new pages that we must write, there are always different experience that one must take in order to find and gain their own success. After going through this semester as a first year, four essential pillars came in mind as the most important things us first years must keep in mind in order to survive the rest of the year and more importantly, get through the next four.

Academics

It’s one of those things that seems to be instantly pushed back, with everything else going on. Pushed back that is, until the first set of midterm marks. This is when you realize that you’re failing or performing poorly in your major. The only solution to this is to drop it and work harder. Don’t risk getting kicked out of your major, it’s not worth the hassle.

Food

Living away from home for the first time has really made finding good food a problem. University has a way of defining what’s edible and what has probably lowered all of our eating standards. Mac and cheese has become a staple for dinner or lunch, while leftovers become breakfast. Pizza has somehow become our main source of vegetables via the tomato sauce. And fruit has become forgotten.

Sleep

Between finding food and studying, this is probably one of the hardest things that students have to manage and balance out. The thing is, sleep is absolutely essential to function. And yet, it is one of the first casualties when studying – next to regular meals. Just had a work out? Well without sleep, those muscles will take longer to heal. Pulling an all nighter before an exam? The facts won’t stick in your short-term memory. Sex? Well, it may be possible, but see how you feel afterwards.

Exploration

I will say that this is the biggest reason to go to university, even over, but not at the cost of academics. This is the chance we all want at some point in our lives to reinvent ourselves as someone cooler, sexier and hopefully more mature. In other words, it’s a chance to develop a genuine personality. Take the time to go to club socials. Drink with friends, drink with strangers, meet as many people as you possibly can. Who knows when another opportunity like this will come again? You only live once, don’t do something stupid or regrettable. Go out, have fun, and become a worldly person. It’s something we should all strive for.

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