We asked some grown ups for their patronising advice about uni
Ever wondered on what it might be like to finish uni, pay a mortgage and experience more than one 7 o’ clock a day?
We hit the streets of London to ask the older generation about life as an official grownup. Believe us, it ain’t all water coolers and blowjobs under the desk…
Lisa, International Business with Spanish at Hull and Anastasia, English Lit, Toronto University
Lisa: I regret nothing! Uni is better than what comes afterwards. Seriously, enjoy uni life while you can because once they get you working, it’s all like “fuck, I wish I was in college”.
Anastasia: Don’t go to lectures, screw it. Just work for like two months for your exams. You’ll be working the rest of your life ‘til you’re 70 or 80, so enjoy uni while you can. Being a grown up isn’t that bad, though. You get money. You can buy shit. Safe.
Doug, Simon and Mego, aged 36, ‘not sure’ and 35. Studied Architecture at Nottingham before opening a digital agency together
Doug: Look at the state of us, we’re not really grown-up! Christ almighty. Why would we have any regrets? Look at where we are now! Try to get a 2:1.
Simon: There was that one housemate I should have slept with but…
Mego: I should say I regret not applying myself to the course more, but that would be bullshit. It’s not just about the academia…try and come out with some kind of entrepreneurial spirit; you can’t be taught that half the time.
Dan and Mike, 27, Engineering and Politics
We made plenty of mistakes in Uni. Isn’t that the whole point? University isn’t about education. You learn in the real world. Make all your mistakes in those three years… The best bit? Public nudity is always fun. Worth it for the stories.
Giacomo, age withheld, studied Economics then post-grad Law
Make sure you get things to have on the CV and talk to people in important positions. The worst thing about being a grown-up? Responsibilities.
Lorna (right), 24, studied Business at Nottingham Trent
The best part of uni is first year, with full overdraft and no dissertation. The worst is third year, no overdraft and a dissertation to do. Watch out for when you actually have to start paying for stuff. Bills are shit.
Jonathan, 29, studied Languages at Manchester Met student. Now a European account manager. We think he likes libraries…
The worst part had to be going to the library every day for about three months before my final exams. It was a mistake not going to the library before third year. It’s tough being a working man and not being able to just roll out of bed at 11 and head to the library. My message to current students? Go to the library.
Relentlessly positive Liz, 31, Chemistry and Physics, PhD in Environmental Engineering
Not going to lie, I love being a grown-up. Although my pHd was a completely wrong decision, I’m now an accountant and enjoying it. I was very lucky to choose a course that suited me so well.
Will, 23, Geography at Liverpool
I’d advise students not to stay in too much. But, ya know, being a grown-up isn’t so bad; it’s just part of life. You have to make the best of it.
Tim, 33, Classics at Kings. Now an events planner studying for a pHd on the side
A lesson to students? Read the questions. Always read the questions. And prepare for a lot of cleaning when you graduate. It never stops.
Sophie, 37, studied Social Anthropology at Hull, before working at an International Aid agency
I’m 38, no 37, I’m 38 next week. I regret signing up to loads of obscure societies during freshers’ week, like the caving society. I never once attended a meeting. Despite that, I’ve made some friends for life. Just last week, I was a bridesmaid for one of my old flatmates.
Hedda, 24, Marketing Communication at Westminster
I hate that I can no longer fix my class schedule, because of having to work from 9-5 every day. If I could give students advice, I’d say to pick your groups carefully and your topics way early.
Elizabeth, 25, and Eleanor, 29, both English Lit grads, both currently working in PR
Eleanor: For a brief period, I leaned toward studying Volcanology. Which in hindsight was a little foolish. The thing I miss most about Uni is lying in bed all day. It’s sad but true; I spent most of my uni life being horizontal.
Elizabeth: I’m a complete nerd.
Joel, 34, Spanish and Business at Leeds. His gap year to Mexico inspired him to open burrito heaven, Daddy Donkey
My one regret is choosing Astrology for one of my credits. I knew nothing about the Universe. And I still don’t.