We asked previous NYSF alumni for their top tips to survive the first year of university and what they wish they’d known in first year.
The first weeks of university are an exciting milestone filled with many new experiences but this shift into independent life can also bring feelings of stress and uncertainty. We asked previous NYSF alumni for their top tips to survive the first year of university and what they wish they’d known in first year.
“Talk to people in tutorials and get their contact details. Tutorial friends don't need to just be for the semester! Also speak to your tutors and lecturers about what they do research wise, we love chatting about our work” – Innes, NYSF 2011 Alumna
“Nothing is spoon fed to you, if you find yourself behind, communicate it ASAP to your lecturer. The first week is a great opportunity to do group activities, try and find a social group you'll enjoy catching up with (eg science students' society) , and a club/society that you'll enjoy volunteering or supporting in some way (Engineers Without Borders/WISE).” – Chris, NYSF 2010 Alumnus
“Have a hobby that has nothing to do with your subject and set aside time each week to participate in your hobby, it can be a sport, a club, hamming, ect. Take the time to not think about uni (it kept me sane).” – Kate, NYSF 2017 Alumna
“Go to lectures. Yes, you can catch up if you miss them, but don't make a habit of it. If you're actually in the lectures, you can ask questions (Don't be shy! Ask them!) and have issues dealt with then and there.”– Jenny, NYSF 2002 Alumna
“It’s okay to drop courses/change majors if you don’t like them or don’t think it’s at your current level of understanding! I stayed in courses and failed them because I thought I had to be there no matter what. It was only in my second term that I realised I could chop and change my degree to suit me, and to find what I loved to study!” – Lillian, NYSF 2015 Alumna
“Look after your mental health. No matter how motivated you might be, no matter how brilliant you are, it doesn’t get you anywhere if you’re completely burnt out.” – Jake, NYSF 2012 Alumnus
“Be brave in these first few weeks, talk to people and make friends! Most people are feeling just as uneasy or anxious about approaching anyone and will be glad with someone to talk to. You are incredible, and with time and a little bit of effort uni will start to feel much more natural. Embrace the opportunity to study what you love and take hold of all of the opportunities offered. You’ve got this!" – Natasha, NYSF 2016 Alumna
We are constantly amazed by the endeavours of our NYSF alumni and wish all our alumni good luck for the coming semester whether it be their first or last!