13 lessons you will learn as a Bristol student before graduating

The uni gym isn’t as daunting as you think it is

I have just gone through the anticlimax that is handing in my final submission and the bells of graduation are chiming in the distance. It has not taken long for me to become nostalgic about my time at uni, thinking about all the fun I have had while wracking up £40,000 in debt.

As I make the fast and painful transition from government funding to selling my soul to the devil, I impart 13 pieces of wisdom I have obtained from my time at The University of Bristol. So sit back, get another deadline extension, and learn from my mistakes.

1. You can’t always live with your friends

Is that friend on your course super fun on nights out? Are you considering living with them next year? Trust me when I say, just because you enjoy their company does not mean you’ll enjoy such company 24 hours a day. Not all friendships are built for cohabitation, and sadly this may be something you have to learn the hard way. 

2. Student accommodation will never be perfect, so be willing to settle

When it comes to picking a place to live, it can be easy to get caught up in the minor details. Do the bedrooms have locks on the door? Is there room for a beanbag? Does it have hot water and a working oven?

At the end of the day, you will love the decrepit nature of your student house because it means you don’t have to worry about keeping it nice.

3. All the vintage shops on Whiteladies or Gloucester road are not as cheap as you think they are

To those who insist on vintage shopping being affordable, tell me how you can possibly justify pricing a cropped, stained and discoloured crop-top at £45.  

4. Your course is important, but your life outside of it is more so 

The biggest lessons you learn from being at uni don’t tend to come from the lecture hall. So whilst it’s important to work hard, don’t forget to value your social life in the process. 

5. Tuna pasta is not enough to live on

I was fine for the first few months of first year. However, after my skin started turning grey, I realised I may have carbed a bit too hard. 

6. You can get anywhere in the city in half an hour or less

I am sure there is evidence to the contrary, but with those death trap scooters looming around every corner, you have absolutely no excuse to not go places.

7. Eat-a-Pitta is easily the best takeaway food around

I have eaten a lot of kebabs over these last three years and not one of them has ever satisfied me as much as four falafels in a box has. And it’s half the price – what’s stopping you?

8. Stokes Croft & Clifton cost the same to live

Say it louder for the tories in the back: GENTRIFICATION. If you are somehow convinced that you can’t afford Clifton you are mistaken my friend, for due to decades of landlord greed, houses in Easton and Westbury now somehow cost the same. 

9. The uni gym isn’t anywhere near as daunting as you think 

For years I avoided this place like the plague. But I am happy to confirm that not one person even slightly noticed me strutting to my Taylor Swift treadmill mix as they were far too busy getting off to themselves in the mirror. 

10. If you’re mean enough to landlords, you tend to get what you want 

Just threaten to withhold rent from the estate agents and they will literally do whatever you need. Of course you won’t actually do it, but they don’t know that. Oh and also, using the word ‘unacceptable’ in lengthy emails should also do the trick. 

11. Lakota will never shut down, regardless of how many times they insist they will

If I had a pound for every time they announced they were going to build flats in Lakota’s place, I might be able to afford one singular item from Mrs Potts.

12. Having a part-time job makes all the difference financially 

Whilst the idea of working alongside your degree may seem overwhelming, you have no idea how much that extra £60 a week can help in paying for white wine.

13. Don’t take your time for granted 

Finally, whilst I have literally only just finished my degree mere moments ago, I already miss waking up at 12, reading half a document and then proceeding to moan about how long my day has been. Now I have to make my own money, not just use the governments.

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