Things you learn in your first year at university

University is a huge stage in many peoples lives and everyone deals with the ups and downs differently. It is a place where everyone who goes there, whether it be for a day or 6 years, can say they learnt something new. This doesn’t just mean they learnt new things on their course, but they learnt so many things about life as a whole because of their experiences. Here are just a few thing I have learnt from my first year at university: 

1. Things are a lot more expensive than you think (especially if you move out)

Moving away to university is already a huge change and one thing you do realise very quickly is that your money just seems to disappear. Most of the time it feels like it has just in fact vanished. After living at home and having your parents pay for just about everything like food, rent/mortgage, toiletries etc., it can come as quite a shock when you realise just how much everything costs.

2. It’s tough to get into a routine

If you are anything like me, you like to have a routine so you can plan how you are spending your time. This is probably one of the biggest differences I’ve found since coming to university. Yes, you have lectures and seminars that can be at the same time almost every week but this can vary depending on your course, and sometimes your day suddenly changes. Being at university allows you to manage a lot of your time how you want to, but this can become quite difficult when you get last minute timetable changes and social events popping up out of nowhere.

3. You will hear so many weird and wonderful accents and dialects.

Whether you stay at home for university or move out, a lot of your new friends will come from up and down the country and sometimes even different countries altogether. So many people will have different accents to you, and it’s hard enough trying to understand those accents without them also introducing new words and phrases to you. You may even find yourself explaining words and phrases you thought were normal to others. I’ve found that many people from the south of England have never heard some of the things I say, as I am a northerner, and vice versa. Here are just a few things I’ve had to explain so far:

  • Mardy = Grumpy, Moody, In a bad mood
  • Ey up = Hello
  • Nowt = Nothing
  • Sumet = Something
  • Gi ore = Give over, stop it
  • Owt = Anything

4. A lot of friendships don’t last

Sometimes you’ll find that some of the people you meet in the first couple of days of university come and go very quickly. Everyone is trying to be friendly and find their place, so most people just talk to anyone and everyone, but the chances are, especially if there are a lot of people on your course, you might not even see or speak to them again. Even some of those who do stick around for a while might end up being people who you don’t really share any common interest with or you can’t hold a conversation with.

5. You miss your pets (and family – ish) more than you can imagine

One major thing that has hit me since moving to university is how much I miss my two dogs are home. You might even find you miss them more than you miss your family (sorry mum and dad) and honestly, I’d love to tell you the best way to deal with it but I’ve still not figured that out myself – I’ll let you now when I do. It is, however, important to keep yourself occupied so you can take your mind of the ones you miss. 

University is a scary yet wonderful experience, and the learning curve is huge. You should be willing to learn and keep and open mind to have a great time and prepare yourself for later life. Let us know if you have any other things that you have learnt during your first year at university.




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