Ten ways to survive college


It’s that time of year again where the people still *unlucky enough* to be in education go back to school, college or university. Lucy and myself went back to college last week - which will explain the lack of blogging recently - and noticed all the first years walking around looking a little lost and a little scared at being in a new place that’s a much bigger campus than they’re used to and more people than they’re used to. Moving from secondary school can be daunting because not only are you moving to a new place with new people but quite often you leave some of your friends behind that act as your comfort blanket because they’ve chosen a different college to you. Lucy and I were quite lucky in that sense and the majority of our friends all chose the same college but for those that don’t have that comfort finding new friends a place you ‘fit in’ can be hard. I have devised and ten step list to help those of you that may be changing schools or transitioning from school to college or even college to university to help you survive. I definitely could’ve benefitted from a list like this so I hope it helps some of you.

1. Talk to new people

Don’t be shy and scared like I was, college is a great place to meet new people who are interested in the same things as you since you get to chose your subjects yourself. Put yourself out there and don’t be afraid - they won’t bite.

2. Get a locker.

I love my locker. That may sound a little weird but when you have to carry around three subject books along with reference books and unit booklets a locker becomes your best friend. Not all college’s have them available but if yours does then I highly suggest you get yourself one.

3. Don’t waste free periods.

This one may be contradictory to the next point but use your free periods to do work or extra reading. As much as socialising with friends is important doing work to make sure you don’t fall behind because once you do it’s incredibly hard to catch up.

4. Socialise.

Like I said before this one is contradictory but as much as doing work is important don’t ignore your friends. Your friends are the ones that will be there when you need them so don’t push them away and become a hermit in the library.

5. Don’t leave work to the last minute.

I am the worst culprit for doing this so I guess this is more of a do as I say not as I do point. But leaving homework to the last minute just puts unneeded pressure on yourself especially if you have to write a 1,000 word essay.

6. Create a meet up point with friends.

For my friendship group this has become a corner in one of the student cafes but it’s our designated point in college where if we have a free or at lunch we all congregate. Having one space makes it easier to find your friends and you don’t end up wondering around college on your own looking lost. It also means that you see all of your friends at some point because you all go to the same spot.

7. Chose subjects you’re interested in.

At the end of the day if you’re doing a subject or course that you aren’t interested in then you’re not going to succeed no matter how much you revise because you just aren’t interested. This happened with me last year, I persevered doing biology when I knew that I hated it and ended up failing. Don’t choose subjects because your friends are doing them or because your parents want you to either because at the end of the day you’re at college for you and what you want to do with the rest of your life.

8. Don’t skip lessons.

Again this is more of a do as I say not as I do point as last year I skipped many of my lessons but by doing so you are only harming yourself. No one can force you to go to college if you don’t want to but whilst you’re there you should make the most of it. It’s proven that the lower your attendance is the lower the chance of you getting high grades in exams. Skipping lessons just contributes to the pressure you put on yourself because then you have to catch up with the work outside of college when you have other work and homework to do already.

9. It’s not a fashion show.

In the UK at secondary school we have to wear school uniform however at college you don’t have to. You can always tell who are first years and who aren’t because the first years always treat college like a fashion show. As much as I like to look nice and presentable I don’t spend two hours in the morning getting ready and trying to choose something to wear because it's just not necessary.

10. Have fun.

As cliché as it sounds having fun is very important. If you aren’t enjoying yourself then college will be the longest two - possibly three - years of your life.

Do you any of you have tips for surviving college?

~ Jade xx

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