University is everything it cracks up to be…

University entices everyone into doing your studying and making sure you complete your degree to the highest potential, but for many this can’t always be the case.

For me personally, my loan lacked in substance and I enjoyed a social life a little too much – so a majority of my time was spent on ensuring my pockets remained filled with the green stuff.

Naturally, I took up weekend employment, occasional bar work, promoting for night clubs which all helped me to gain money. This resulted in lending my university work to take a set back, but because I had less time to do my work, it enabled me to gain a much better work ethic. A trait every final-year and masters student will tell you, is vital.

It goes without saying, but certain things take priority; sacrificing certain nights out, not eating steak every night… saving where possible and cherry picking certain things. On occasion I knew I probably made the wrong choices, but I think hindsight is a fine thing and has put me in a much better position now I’ve graduated when it comes to saving money and prioritising.

My degree was great. I know this only now that I’ve finished, but it gave me drive, enabled me to study things I was genuinely interested in, as well as be around some like minded people. I fell into it almost by fluke, I knew I was vaguely interested in my degree, but I chose it because I wasn’t quite sure what I wanted to do and knew that it wouldn’t be completely useless to me in the future.

It’s always going to be different for each person. I saw uni as a chance to grow up and find my interests – if I’d have chosen a degree that I genuinely perceived as my career, I’m sure it would have been different but I chose my degree because I was interested and intrigued by it… not because I wanted to do itt for the rest of my life, and I think for many people at university the same aspect applies… but this is by no means a bad thing.

I was never the sharpest tool in the shed, not by a long stretch… I never really enjoyed school, but studying at University allows you to learn and understand knew things, that may or may not benefit you in later life, in your own way… Whether it’s from a lecturer or from reading the single paper that carries you through your dissertation. It helps you find and acquire the learning capacity that can be transferred to all careers in the future.

Of course, I think it’s safe to say that everyone just wants to do well.. no one wants to fail. But whatever you do at uni, wether you put all your time into studying or meeting people, jump head first into it, wether it’s the academic side, the social side.. whichever side… go in with two feet. Immersing myself in the University lifestyle was probably the best thing I ever did, it’s still safe to say that uni isn’t for everyone but I feel the benefits of doing s degree and going to university stretch much further than the piece of paper you receive at the end of it.

Matt Rhodes

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