I still remember filling out my CAO, not having a clue what I was doing, and scared about the uncertainty of the future. I was putting down courses just for the sake of it. Two years later, and this uncertainty has turned into a wonderful experience filled with laughter, stress, cramming, adventure, excitement and memories that will stay with me forever.

College so far has been an experience that has taught me so much, and I have yet to learn more. Coming to college for the first time, I was anxious about “fitting in” with everyone, but I very quickly realised that college is filled with a vast amount of students who are just doing their own thing, and that it’s really not about fitting in. I vividly remember going to the society fair and being amazed by all the different societies and clubs available to suit different people. Seeing this joyful atmosphere instantly eased my anxiety.

Amidst all the fun, a second worry crept up on me without any warning, which was assignments and exams, something that I tend to forget about. I’m sure this is a tip that you have all heard before, but nevertheless it is a good one. Staying ahead of due dates is definitely a big help in reducing stress (even though some of my all-nighter cramming sessions in the 24 hour library have been some of my most iconic nights as a student!). For sure they taught me perseverance.

My course incorporates a placement each year, as well as normal college work. Last year I had a six week placement during the summer, and I definitely moaned and complained about having a placement during the summer after my exams. However, that placement ended up being an extremely rich experience for me and I wouldn’t change a thing about it. I was close-minded about it and, having completed it, I’ve realised the importance of it and I’m excited about my next placement and future career.

From my experience, my advice to a college student would be to stay open-minded to all the new things you meet, and don’t be afraid to try out experiences that were unknown to you before. College is a time to explore and is a wonderful opportunity which will lead on to many great things!


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