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Life has just begun: You are a student! One of the University elite. The ultimate “cool kid” as you drive off to your new digs at University and begin your journey to adulthood and making your mark in the world. This is truly one of the best times of your life and here’s why.
You may think you know yourself, but you have no idea. The years spent at University or College will have one heck of an affect on you as you will find yourself immersed in a completely different way of life. University is a melting pot of interesting, fun, adventurous and quirky people who are all dying to share themselves with you. Get out of that little box you live in and meet new people! Chat to someone who appears a bit “out there” and learn from them. Soak in the deliciousness that is this hub of eclectic young adults and you will surprise yourself with how many new things you learn to enjoy and discover.
When the time comes to leave the wonderful world of university and all the freebies that seem to pour out at you on a weekly basis, you will long for the days when you could not even walk into a store without receiving something for free. These few years offer a magical delight called “student discount” and it affords you half price to a myriad of opportunities. Want to go to the movies? Feel like some sushi or a trip to your favourite clothing store? Flash that student card and wave it around proudly as it casts a spell over prices and cuts them instantly in half! Be warned: paying full price in the future will take some getting used to.
Study what you want to study
You are no longer in the confines of high school and forced to endure the boring subjects you had to conquer in order to get to where you are now. University is the number one place to broaden your mind and break your imagination wide open as you indulge in exciting and interesting courses that you actually chose. Your lecturers and professors are bursting with years of knowledge and wisdom and you need only ask to enrich your experience. There are also loads of courses and electives to choose from. You are now in the driver’s seat on the highway to your future and what you learn is entirely your decision.
Your parents are still there for you
You may think that the only time you will ever need your parents, while at University, is for money or having your washing done. And yes, mom will still wash your clothes and perhaps shed a quiet tear or two for her child that’s left the nest while she does it; but the point here is this: during this time of self discovery, all night study sessions, dating and break ups and partying too late, there will be times when you will need some serious advice. You may want to drop out or change up your classes or face a tough personal decision that you have no idea how to handle. Your parents will be there with solid advice. Talk to them. Open up and share what you are going through. They may give you some very valuable advice from their own experiences.
Learn to Budget
University is the perfect time to learn to manage your money and to s-t-r-e-t-c-h it out. Your parents will supply you with a certain amount and you will have to make it work. Keep in mind, they are already funding your studies so anything over and above that is pretty generous, if you ask me. Having to make ends meet with a budget is a great way to prepare for life after university when you have to fend for yourself entirely. If you can master the art of buying groceries and still having some money over for going out with your friends, then you are a true university student!
Super long holidays = spoilt rotten
When you come home for the holidays, your parents will be so happy to see you that the gifts, outings, new clothes and meals will overflow! Not only are your holidays ridiculously long when compared to the school term breaks you used to have, but you are now able to do so much more than ever before. Maintain good grades and pass all your courses and the treats will keep on coming!
Spread your wings and learn to fly
This is your greatest chance to define yourself, try new things, get involved in societies, join a charity, get that first part time job, go to class in your pyjamas, and ace that exam after an all night study cram session! This is the time to do anything and everything, within safety boundaries please, and change up your entire outlook on life if you feel like it. Break free of that shell or the person you were in high school and find your true identity as an independent adult. These are the years when you are “allowed” to learn, to mess up, make mistakes and welcome new experiences.
Embrace and enjoy every minute, every lecture, every glass of wine and laugh with a friend. Work hard. Study. Have fun and above all keep finding reasons why it’s awesome to be a student!
Carla-Mari Moore completed her BA Degree at the University of Stellenbosch with majors in English literature, Philosophy and Psychology. She then went on to attain her International Chef qualification and spent some time in the culinary world. She has been spreading her passion for helping others and her love for working with people by co-owning Gutsy Tutoring, Gutsy Green and blogging about what she loves and wants to share with others!