What I Learnt After First Year

One of our resident freshers give his take on the past year in Soton

So my first year is up. The days of multiple choice exams, 5 hours of lectures a week and waking up with a hangover almost every afternoon are behind me (yes, I do Geography). Looking back to September when us freshers were eager yet anxious and that transition to the (very slightly) maturer individuals we are now makes me wonder what all the fuss was about. Here’s a few things I’ve learnt as a new comer to higher education:

Jesters really is the Palace of Dreams

God bless Jesters' shoes

I don’t care what the haters say but this place is amazing, perhaps I’m just not bored of it yet. Where else can you get a pint for 50p, always bump into someone you know and end up in a conversation with a randomer about a bizarre topic? You can’t. Compared to the TigerTigers and other crappy chain clubs back in your average home town, Jesters really is paradise and visiting this dive now is still just as good as it was on my first time during freshers’ week.

Academics don’t have a sense of humour. Or sense of dress. Or even any awareness of the spectrum of human emotions. I’m pretty certain that these guys aren’t even human hence their robotic mannerisms and dedication to their ‘very important research’. I wonder if they know that a real world exists beyond the papers, conferences and lecture theatres…

Southampton isn’t really that bad… compared to South London. As a Tab writer, I’m guilty of a bit of sensationalism here and there but that’s just what we do. Compared to my hometown, Southampton is pretty tame. All the stories of stabbings on Gordon Avenue and a burnt body in a bin are horrific but stuff like this is that common where I come from, rarely people bat an eyelid anymore.

"Down it Fresher!"

Things that were amazing as a ten year old are brilliant all over again. Think fancy dress, corridor cricket and coco pops. There’s no point in going for gold and aiming for firsts in every module or even 2:1s for that matter; it’s first year and it contributes nothing to your final grade so it was best to enjoy it as much as possible. Planning your next night out is way more important than planning that essay you just got set. It’s first year; it didn’t count and I didn’t really care, the maturity and seriousness starts next year… well hopefully.

Kitchen appliances really aren’t that difficult to use yet somehow we still manage to cock it up. Our mothers (and fathers) make it look so easy boiling pasta on a hob or simply putting some items of clothing in a washing machine. But as students it’s in our natural capacity to make sure something goes wrong and causes maximum disruption to the entire Halls.

So second year awaits me but now it’s time to pack away the crayons for summer and say goodbye to not having to give a shit.