Dear Future Student,
You’ve made it! Welcome to the best four years of your life, as they all say. Be prepared to realize that what you heard about university, isn’t as true as you may think. Throughout this process of getting your degree, you’ll not only learn from your program, but you will also learn from your peers, your environment, and yourself. Here in university, you are responsible for your own learning. Professors will remind you about upcoming due dates, but it is your responsibility to make sure you don’t fall behind. And let me tell you, it is really easy to fall behind.
Going to university comes with many new experiences: parties, relationships, and freedom. This new sense of freedom and independence is your first step into adulthood but taking advantage of this chance can lead to issues in other areas. At least, that’s what happened with me. Just like you, I was very excited to move to a new city and start my adult life. All the independence that came with this experience made me feel invincible of some sort. Evidently, I became engrossed in the social aspect of university, causing me to fall behind academically. I would hang out with my friends late into the night and was not able to wake up for my 8:30am classes. After missing the first few 8:30s, I told myself it would not happen again. However, it did. This notion of prioritizing my social life over my academics continued throughout the first half of the first semester of my first year. I needed a reality check, and I did get one: Midterms. All of the confidence I had in my ability to have fun and simultaneously get good grades was quickly removed, once receiving my midterm grades. My marks were nowhere near what I hoped to achieve, and I was close to failing Microeconomics. I knew that the only person to blame was myself. After midterms are over, final examinations come around before you know it. I had less than 6 weeks to turn my grades around and this was not easy. The stress I was facing from the need to boost my grades was mentally and physically visible to those around me. I knew I needed to change my habits and that’s exactly what I did. I started by using my planner to create daily checklists and would not go out until those tasks were done. I also started utilizing new studying methods to make the most out of my time. When finals came around, I felt more comfortable, and my grades did end up improving. I realized that if I followed this ideology all semester, I could have been a more successful student.
I know that was a long story, but the one thing I hope you can takeaway is: learning to balance your academic and social priorities is essential in university. Now don’t get me wrong, university is the best time for you to experience all the things you look forward to, but to a certain extent. Give yourself time to plan your day, study efficiently to get more things done quickly, and learn to prioritize. Once you figure out the best routine for yourself, you will be able to develop this balance. If you ever feel like it’s too late, trust me, it’s not. One bad grade does not dictate the rest of your academic success, the most important thing is to learn from that hardship and find ways to improve. All in all, university truly is the most memorable time of your life. Don’t forget to have fun, learn, and grow from this journey of pursuing your degree!
A Current Student