First of all, I want to start by apologizing for my rather long leave of absence. Sorry.
Moving on, next order of business…
Dear Mom, Dad, former teachers, role models, basically all of the adults in my life, I’ve been working non-stop and studying until my brain couldn’t take it anymore. In fact, just stop reading right now because I’ll just go on and on about all the work I’ve been doing and you’ll just be bored out of your minds.
Dear everyone else, I’ve been having intense Netflix marathons, sleeping in until 5 (pm not am), and nursing intense hangovers. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve always… well, usually, put work before play and school sure as hell is my first priority (after all, I AM paying $10k to be here damn it!) but the truth is, I just don’t get that much work anymore! I literally have 3 different lectures and 2 seminars every week and the only assignments I have all semester are a whopping total of 3 essays around 1,500 words each. For the first time, I’ve finished all of my assignments, readings, and extra research way ahead of the deadline, without missing a single lecture. I’ve joined the school radio station, TV station, newspaper, and a collection of different societies (clubs). I’ve visited every cafe within a 2-mile radius of my flat
(Barker Tea House, Cardiff)
… and explored all of the local castles for cultural enlightenment.
(Castell Coch, Cardiff)
But you know what? Every once in a while, a girl needs a break from that busy, trying-something-new-every-day lifestyle. Thus, I’ve spent the last couple weeks like the human reincarnation of a sloth.
So friends, now that I’ve had plenty of rest, let me catch you up on everything you’ve missed…
Well, it all started with Freshers Week (freshers = freshmen). This is a beautiful British uni tradition where, after you’ve moved into your dorms & the parents have left, you go clubbing literally every night for 2 weeks straight. During this time, you still have lectures in the morning but it’s only introductory material (how assignments will be graded, exam dates, online resources, etc etc…), oh, and your professors fully expect you to be ridiculously hungover. I kid you not, one of my lecturers started out with this statement, “Good morning, I hope everyone’s well and not TOO hungover,” then praised us for showing up without a hint of sarcasm, as if dragging my ass out of bed at noon was a major accomplishment.
As for the actual coursework itself, it’s less like work and more like fun. Since UK universities allow you to study only the subjects you like (yay for no general ed classes), the workload is very light and the lectures are actually entertaining. On top of that, each department hosts events like wine & sandwiches socials with the faculty and student bar crawls so you can meet new people.
From what I’ve seen so far, university is what you make of it. If I wanted to, I could skip all of my lectures, write decent enough essays to get passing grades, skim over my readings without doing any extra research, and stay in bed all day binge watching Game of Thrones and that would be completely fine. However, when you’re paying a lot of money for your education, your work ethic tends to change. Why not take advantage of the school’s societies? Why not host a show on the student radio? Why not do research in the library? Or contact your professor and personal tutor for help? You kind of already paid for it anyways.
University is a lot of fun. Seriously, it doesn’t compare to high school at all. If anyone ever tells you that high school is the best time of your life, run in the other direction because they are delusional. And the best part about uni? You can do whatever you want. Like eat an entire box of large pizza from Dominos… not that I’ve done that or anything… but no matter how exhilarating having that power of freedom is, it’s always important to keep in mind that with great power, comes great responsibility.