University is great. We even dare to say “these will be the best years of your life.” However, like everything in life, university might not be exactly what you expected it to be. Like many of you, I had high expectations for my first semester at university, but it didn’t take me long to realise that university isn’t quite like the American Pie movies. I had other realisations after my first semester at university:
1. You’re not going to every class
One of the first things I promised myself was that I was going to attend every class. This is the biggest lie you can tell yourself and it will completely fall apart after your first semester. Once you figure out what the worthless classes are, they automatically disappear from your schedule and you start doing more productive things with your time, like sleeping ten hours and catching up with the latest episodes of Game of Thrones.
2. Finals will hit you like a bullet
So the semester is going just fine, you’re having fun, going to parties… and that’s when they show up: finals. This is the moment when you finally understand what it means to study. According to every student’s dictionary — well, to mine, at least — studying means spending seven consecutive nights at the university trying to learn an entire semester in one week.
3. Coffee has an amazing power
If you didn’t like it before, you will now. During university you will drink tons of coffee. Why? Because coffee is the only thing that will get you through that 8am class with that one snore-inducing teacher. It’s also the most effective way to get you up and concentrated when you really need to study. Bonus tip: it’s really good to cure hangovers.
4. You will study hard and party even harder
Like I said, yes, you will study more than in high school, but you will also party more than before. And let me tell you this: university parties are the best! You drink without spending much, learn all the dance hits, and meet lots of new people. My advice to you is: go to every party you can, even if you already know that the morning after is going to be hard.
5. Beer is love, beer is life!
It’s cheap, it’s fresh, and it exists in every country: these are the three main reasons to love beer, and if you’re in university, that’s an extra reason. Beer is the drink of choice of almost every student and one of the most common reasons to gather with your friends. P.S: Never try to beat the beer record in your university. Never!
6. Money strangely disappears
Where did the money go? We have no idea. When you become a university student, you also become poor without even knowing how. You go out one night with your friends and the morning after you ask yourself where your allowance went. The story repeats itself every month. Where did the money go? It’s still a mystery to me.
7. You’ll find a new meaning for friendship
Once you go to university, you’ll make new friends. It happened really fast with me and without the awkwardness of similar situations. That’s because when we start university we’re all in the same situation, so everyone is very approachable. Really good friendships come out of these three-four years, and you create strong bonds with many of your new friends, especially if you expected with them.
8. You will (kind of) want to go back home
When you move from your hometown and study in a different city, this is a thought that always crosses your mind: going back home, not having to do laundry, and your mum’s home-cooked meals. Then, when you’re home, you understand you made the right decision and realise how much you’d be missing out on if you hadn’t been bold enough to start this new adventure.
Thanks for reading this post!
What were your realisations after the first semester at University? Let us know in the comments. And remember: if you need student accommodation, you’ll find the perfect student home on Uniplaces.
My name is Miguel Romisio, I'm 20 years old and I'm studying Management at ISEG (from Universidade de Lisboa). I see myself as an hardworking and interested young man and I have a great desire to learn with my professional and personal experiences.