Hindsight really is a wonderful thing. We asked 14 students at universities around the country for advice and what they wish they knew before uni so you don’t make the same mistakes they did.
Moosa – Accounting & Finance, University of Southampton
"I wish I knew how to cook, I ended up just ordering all the time in first year and spent so much money. I also wish I was more active in societies / sports, unis an ideal time for that and I ended up sitting in my room half the time like a hermit lol."
Chloe – English, University of Leeds
"I wish I knew that it’s okay not to live the stereotypical ‘student lifestyle’. Not wanting to go clubbing 4 times a week does not mean you aren’t having a good time at university."
Hannah – Fine Art, University of West England
"I wish I knew what all the washing instructions meant on clothes lmao"
Rob – Mechanical Engineering, University of Leeds
"I wish I was more relaxed during freshers. Everyone is in the same boat and doesn’t know anyone. Whilst I made friends that I’m still with to this day from freshers, most people you won’t see again, so don’t sweat it."
Matthew – Film Studies, University of Greenwich
"I wish I knew how important rest days of no drinking & no work is for mental health."
Clari – Business & Marketing, University of Leeds
"I wish I'd understood overdrafts & student loans better. Student loans aren’t just free money. I went wild with spending in first year and ended up in my overdraft, they're a really slippery slope & can be hard to get out of!"
Amy– Medical BioChemistry, University of Brighton
"I wish I'd known not to bother buying a million saucepans and frying pans cos everyone had done the same and you don’t need one of everything each."
Chloe – Natural Sciences, University of Leeds
"I wish I'd made sure to have an easy fancy dress outfit handy for freshers."
Sophia – Interior Spacial Design, University of Arts London
"If I had known that I could transfer courses if the course isn’t right for you I would have looked at alternative options at the time and studied a topic I was more interested in, rather than sticking out a course I wasn't happy with."
Ellen – Chemistry, University of Leeds
"I wish I’d used the summer before uni to build up my cooking skills. Make sure you create a list of easy affordable meals you can cook and freeze up into lots of portions. Also first year does in fact count if you want to do a year in industry/ study abroad as you apply with these grades!"
Mya – International Relations, University of Southampton
"I wish I'd known you don’t have to go to all the freshers events to make friends."
Robert – Marketing Management, Cardiff Metropolitan University
"I wish I knew more about the various student societies at uni, make sure you go to the freshers fair to speak with them."
Jo – Management with Marketing, University of Leeds
"I would say to have fun but put in the effort in first year even if it doesn’t count. It means you’re better prepared to do well when your marks actually count, and it also puts you in a good position for year abroad or year in industry places."
Sunday – Journalism, NAU
"I wish I had known that it’s okay to not know what you want to be when you grow up, uni helps you figure out your path!"
Do you have any stories or tips you'd like to share? Write for us! Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to find out more!