University. That green light at the end of the tunnel every sixth former reaches toward after twelve gruelling months of exams and stress. The supposed key ingredient to a prosperous future filled with wealthy success. The years of fun you will never forget, where your independence is eagerly accessed and abused for all its worth. Flowing torrents of opportunity awaits every bright eyed, bushy tailed fresher embarking on their first year of the wonderful experience that is university.
Having survived the crazy world of first year, I can honestly say it is no easy ride but filled with accomplishment and achievement. Chaos, challenges and camaraderie can all be expected coupled with lots of fun and games as you desperately if not rather clumsily navigate your way through the course itself and living away from the loving, helpful arms of Mom and Dad. I promise, you will never take the comfort of your sofa or having someone to cook, clean and wash your clothes for you, for granted ever again!
My chosen field of study is journalism at the University of Kent. My visions of waking up everyday at noon and partying every night until my feet could not dance anymore rapidly evaporated as I walked into the introduction week and was immediately barrelled with work, demonstrations and a growing sense that this may be a bit harder than initially anticipated. While university is about exploration and gaining life experience, it is also about getting a degree in an area of the working sector that will support you for the rest of your life. I quickly gathered this fact and have since become adapted to the idea of balancing work and play (as well as mastering the art of last minute hand ins involving an abundance of caffeine, sugar and the best friend who has also forgotten that assignments don’t write themselves).
Battles with ovens, flatmates and the mysterious fact that if you chuck all the washing into the machine without separating it you will end up with blue sheets, are all elements of the experience that makes up the best and worst year of your life so far. The illusion that first year is essentially a gap year filled with booze and no responsibility is simply just that, an illusion. Having said this, first year has been the most exciting, challenging but rewarding time and I cannot wait to get back to the madness and do it all over again for year two!