Leaving for University is a huge change in a person's life, and for many students, it will be the first time that they venture out into the world to survive independently of their parents.
Escaping the watchful eyes of your well-meaning, but exasperating parents is, of course, a great opportunity to live your own life at last. University can also be very daunting, and it's difficult to know what to expect or how you'll cope with University life.
S-Cool is on hand to give you a few tips as to what you can expect, and to ease you into University life. The main worry that most students have about going to University is making friends. Getting an education is all well and good, but that's the easy part!
For at least three years, you're going to be living amongst several thousand young people, away from all your old friends, and it's quite natural to be concerned about meeting people and making friends.
Don’t panic! This isn't something you have to worry about at all. Every single person who arrives at University for the first time is also in the same boat. No matter how cool and confident they appear, nobody knows anybody. Everybody is looking to make friends.
In the first few days at University, everyone is so desperate to make friends that a casual "hello" or asking someone for directions will result in a conversation, and probably more. Much more if you're particularly lucky, but we won't go into that!
If you're living in halls, then you'll meet everyone on your corridor almost immediately. As long as you're vaguely friendly, then the people in your corridor will probably end up as friends for the rest of your time at University. You'll find that once you've met a few people, then you'll meet the people that they've met, and so on. The real problem is remembering everyone's names in the first week or so.
You'll probably find, in the long run, that you spend the first term meeting people, and the rest of your University life trying to avoid them!
The student bar is a great place to meet people, and with your new-found freedom, it's more than likely you and your hall mates will be heading there with alarming speed once you've unpacked your stuff.
Naturally, being away from home for possibly the first time can lead to overdoing things, and when several hundred students are packed into a bar, their hormones bouncing all over the walls, things can get messy. If you want to make a good impression on people in your first few days at University, it's probably best that you don't get horribly drunk and spend the rest of your days there trying to live down the fact that you invented a new cocktail consisting of all the red-coloured drinks in the bar, danced on the table and sang all forty-three verses of "I'm a little goblin".
Best to go easy, make lots of friends, and have a good time. You'll thank us for this advice when you see someone else making a fool of themselves. Especially when you have to get up at 8am in the morning to go to some introductory lecture. Whatever you do.....drink responsibly!
The opposite sex
The opposite sex is something that is no doubt on many students minds as they leave for University, if it isn't constantly anyway. Yes, University is a really good place to meet girls/boys/whatever takes your fancy. Yes, University can be a place of dubious morals and debauchery, but this doesn't mean that you should be stupid.
More students regret events that occurred in their first two weeks than you can imagine. Again, our advice is to play it cool, be sensible, and don't do anything that you'll regret, probably for the rest of your life. You're at University for a long time, so rushing headlong into things isn't a good idea. And beware of second and third years as well - especially third years! They have the strange notion that first years are easy prey. Any second or third year being unbearably nice and friendly towards you should be viewed with extreme caution. Especially if they're offering to buy you drinks.
We're not advocating that you be unfriendly, just on your guard.
So, you've arrived at University, made a few friends, hopefully avoided getting too drunk, and the lecherous advances of your desperate elders. What next? That would be work then. The reason that you're going to University in the first place... Remember?