Here I am, a recent graduate of a 3 year degree and there are a lot of things I wish I knew at the beginning of my college experience. Here’s a few things that I wish I could have told my first year self. 

1. Make the Most of Those Student Discounts

You will end up saving a bomb. Whether it is clothes, food or cinema tickets, now is the time to use these. You’ll probably find loads a places around you college that do student discounts. Do your research.

2. Exercise Daily

As students, we sit down in lectures all day and go out drinking at night. It’s not the healthiest lifestyle out there. That is why it is best to squeeze in an hour of exercise a day. Even if it is a brisk walk, it will help you stay a bit more fit.

3. Your Major Doesn’t Matter

I studied Journalism & Visual Media, which is a very broad topic. It wasn’t guaranteed that all of us in my course were going to go into journalism. Despite this, there was a point where I actually thought I was going to become a journalist. However, now I have found myself starting a job in Marketing. If you do any type of humanities degree, you will probably won’t be going into that. This could be for the better, trust me. You will realise what area of work suits you.

4. It’s Okay to Make Mistakes All the Time

College is a time of making countless mistakes – and learning from them. I, along with many of my peers have made some plenty of stupid decisions. Whether it’s going out the night before an exam, making a fool of yourself after too many G&Ts or being too lazy to submit an assignment on time, it is important to make these mistakes now. You will learn how to avoid these disasters for future reference.

5. Do Things YOUR Way, No One Else’s

As my friends say, “You do you boo”. This statement is important in college. Do you feel like having a night in instead of a crazy night in Dicey’s? Do it. People will not always agree with what you do. Learn to be okay with people not approving of your decisions. It’s imperative to build up strength and self-confidence in college. You’ll get a lot of shit thrown in your direction, it will help to get a thick skin.

6. Make Yourself Uncomfortable

Learn to work through challenging tasks. Say yes to every opportunity going your way. The sooner you do this, the sooner you will be able to make the most of your time in college. For me, it was going on a J1 by myself, which was a big step out of my comfort zone. I never really traveled anywhere without my family before. If you think of doing something crazy and scary, do it. You’re in college and young, the world is at your feet.

7. Prepare For Life After College

I was in constant denial over finishing college and going out into the real world. It is daunting to think of what life will be like with responsibilities. It will go by really fast. Try to plan something now. Whether it’s a grad visa, a graduate job or a masters; it will be better than having nothing to do when you finish.

By Aoife Crilly