Before going to University I had envisioned something which would resemble a scene from Skins; a lot of sex and drugs drowned by alcohol.
However, the first semester was a much more ‘polite’ introduction where alcohol was only existent in the colloquial language and the only pills which were being popped were cold and flu from the much anticipated ‘fresher’s flu’.
From the academic perspective (which to be honest although at first year doesn’t seem of pivotal importance is the core reason why we are at University) the leap from A level to degree I felt was a smaller step in comparison to GCSE and A level. However, ‘adequately satisfied’ and ‘it’s only first year’ were phrases which seemed to echo around the University when trying to justify grades which only reflected the lack of sleep and excess of alcohol which were endured the previous nights before deadlines.
As equilibrium of calmness and comfortability was established the announcement of having to find housemates and an actual house for the second year after only knowing each other a mere three months seemed to be the catalyst of many confrontations and pandemonium. The feeling and fear of growing up became more obvious and so did responsibility. Some found it easier than others as rare groups instantly found a house they wanted in comparison to others who probably used the the word ‘ compromise’ more times than a fat kid uses ‘food’ in a sentence.
When the dilemma of houses were diminished and everyone had chosen their house and housemates and the three months ahead only consisted of essays the world was our oyster and Broad Street was our playground. The second term added a new dimension due to friendship groups slowly being established. Thus, meaning people were less restricted and more open with their individuality, also meaning the ‘politeness’ which was established in the first term was slowly disintegrating and my expectations at the start were becoming more apparent and true. Walks of shames across the courtyard were starting to be acknowledged, the pills were being popped for different uses and the alcohol was flowing like the river Nile, not a care in the world… until deadlines fast approached and the thought of ‘oh shit, why did I leave this until night before?’ occurred.
The third and final semester hit us fast and the realisation of exams and how quick the year has gone equally the same. Procrastination had never been exercised so much and every possible activity which could have been thought of was endeavoured in the attempt of forgetting about revision. However, exams were there to stay and revision had to be endured, though everyone was praying for the last exam and the first alcoholic beverage at the Student Union.
The last couple of weeks were spent how a student is usually stereotyped; sleeping, drinking and eating fast food until our heart was content. As the curtains were closing for first year nostalgia was kicking in, the friendships and close bonds that had been made and the independence/maturity which had been established on an individual level were becoming more and more apparent.
It’s incredible how one year can change your whole perspective and how the friendships made can be so strong in such a small space of time. However, I wouldn’t say University changes you I would put forward the case that University gives you the resources which you can utilise in discovering your weaknesses and becoming the person you’ve always wanted to be. It is down to you whether you want to embrace this or not.
As Anton Chekhov once said “University brings out all abilities, including incapability”