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University Edition | First Year Advice

It's that time of year where students are entering a new point in their lives and going off to university. You may be nervous or excited but nonetheless university is your time to shine as you are starting with a clean slate. Along with this comes independence and decisions that will affect your future. The first week of university will be the most important, so soak up everything you can and make sure to attend orientations events as this is your chance to meet new people.

I compiled a short but crucial list of advice that I wish I had back in the day :

{Queen's University}

Avoid purchasing textbooks from your school's bookstore

Let me tell you, I was a real keener in first year and made sure I had most of my books bought by the end of first week of classes, this was a mistake. Instead I recommend you to buy used textbooks from either upper years or find an alternative cheaper method online.

Get involved

There is a plethora of club and activities for you to join on campus, name your interest and it'll probably exist. This is your chance to network and meet new friends. Being in university is not the time to be shy but open yourself up to new opportunities. You can also go beyond your university campus. It's easy to be on campus all the time but take the time to immerse yourself in the community at large and its residents.

Go to your classes

Let's face it, you're in university to learn and get a degree. Avoid the temptation of skipping class because later on it will become addictive and you may regret it. Going to class will play in your favour as many professors give subtle hints as to what will be on exams during class. 

Avoid any in class distractions

Phones and laptops can be put away, Facebook and Twitter can be checked in your spare time. Get your pen and paper out instead!

Manage your time wisely

An agenda will be your best friend. Make sure you get all your work done before going out and being social.

Don't be afraid to talk to your professors

It sounds intimidating but in the long run it will benefit you as they will remember who you are. Take advantage of professors office hours. It is the best way to get help and have your professor put a name to a face. So come exam time, they will be much more willing to help a student who has shown steady effort rather than a student who is virtually non existent and skips. In addition, building a strong relationship with your professor can lead to teaching assistant opportunities and better recommendations.

Try to stay healthy

Without mom and dad there, it may be tempting to always have chicken fingers or pizza but Freshman 15 is a real challenge to avoid. With the right food and enough sleep, you won't have a problem. Utilizing the gym facilities on your campus is also strongly encouraged. Go exercise in between classes (or early in the morning) and stay in shape.

Back up your files

This should be a no brainer as you seriously do not need to be tech savvy to know that backing up your laptop is probably the most important thing to do while in university. Use an external hard drive or Dropbox to save everything, especially important essays, reports, research material you name it!

Four years will pass by in no time so be sure to enjoy every moment you have being involved, social and of course studious. 

Soon this will be you:

{Last days at Queen's University with housemates}

{Showing off our Iron Rings}

Look out for more University Edition posts!

Rosalyn Gambhir
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  1. Great advice :) I also bought all of my books full price my first year, but now I either find them at the library or on Kijiji!

  2. At least I was able to sell all my books to a first year student the following year at half off! You can purchase textbooks that would normally be $100 for $20 online or less!


[name=Rosalyn Gambhir] [img=https://i.imgur.com/9rNiMGU.jpg] [description=Rosalyn Gambhir is the gal behind the blog The Staycationer. Whether it's exploring the local food scene with her foodie partner-in-crime or taking in the view from her favourite cafe, Rosalyn is always a tourist, looking for the next exciting adventure within Kingston, Ontario and beyond. The Staycationer allows you to rediscover hidden gems in your very own backyard.] (facebook=https://www.facebook.com/thestaycationer) (twitter=https://twitter.com/rosalyngambhir) (instagram=https://www.instagram.com/rosalyngambhir/)

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