Third year is stressful but there’s a bittersweet sense that it’s all coming to an end

Huffing and puffing my way to my 9am is a real test of the endurance, willpower and motivation I have in the tank for my final few months at university

There’s no two ways about it, final year is stressful. It’s deadline after deadline after deadline. The sense of ease and calm that existed in first term is gone. The January exam season is over, we’re back after the Christmas break and the workload has hit us like a tonne of bricks. It’s only the second week of lectures and huffing and puffing my way to my Thursday morning 9am is a real test of the endurance, willpower and motivation I have in the tank for my final few months at university.

In final year there’s a lot going on all of the time

I keep saying to friends that I can’t believe we’re in final year. First year was a wipeout from Covid but we made the most of it, second year was the sandwich filler, slap bang in the middle, and now, I’m in third year and you’re telling me that in a few months it all comes to an end? When you add a certain dissertation on top of the deadlines and keeping up with module content, it’s a lot for anyone, and I study a degree that involves looking at trees and going on bat walks. I’ve even had an exam purely about soil.

There are so many possibilities contained within the next few months that it can be unnerving

The unknowns of the the wedge of time between now and summer seem vast and wide. For many, perhaps it feels quite unnerving. In free moments I find myself scanning the web for summer internships and thinking about whether a grad job is actually the most sensible route to take. Some friends have mega jobs lined up after uni in the big smoke of London, and call me old fashioned, but I’ve been surprised by how many people are doing a masters.

I suppose up until now we’ve had the security of university to come back to after summer break. This year it’s different and plans can change, but I’ll miss Nottingham as a base. Wollaton Park, campus, The White Hart and Peggy’s Skylight – these places are as much a physical landmark of Nottingham as they are in memory.

Change is the only constant

Ultimately, there’s a lot of decisions to be made over the coming months. There’s a fine balance between time spent at the pub and keeping the diss rolling onwards. I feel it’s about embracing the mystery of what could happen, being grateful for opportunity, and focusing on the exciting times ahead.

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