Dear Fresher Me,
Where do I even start?
The chances are if I was reading this back in first year I wouldn’t be listening to me either. But you probably still think that Dublin could easily beat Mayo in an All-Ireland final, so listen up. You’re going to learn more about yourself than in your lectures this year, even though ‘that’s not how college is supposed to work’, just go with it.
Firstly, try and look half decent for your student I.D card. Unfortunately you’re going to be stuck with it for the next few years and not looking like a scruff will avoid that awkward stare down with the Topshop sales assistant when you want to get the student discount.
Also you are 17 so you have to put up with that horrible bright yellow strip on your student card that screams underage, ‘no craic’. Don’t worry though you actually managed to sneak into a few events during Fresher’s week by covering that awful yellow strip with a white barcode sticker, still don’t know how they fell for that one.
Don’t leave your assignments to the last minute. The majority of the time you probably will, but ‘Coppers’ isn’t going anywhere anytime soon so just get that sickening politics essay out of the way, then you won’t have to pull the dreaded all nighter before deadline day.
It would also be smart to actually pay attention during your library tour. You won’t be fully aware of its existence until second year, but it is worth knowing a thing or two about how it works. When actually using the library, turn-off your phone. After all, Snapchat and Facebook nearly caused you to fail second year.
Do not forget about book loans, you are completely incapable of extending your book return dates and it will cost you, especially if it is a short-term loan. €30 for being a few hours late, think of all the Nubar chicken goujons you could buy with that, so try not to waste your money on fines.
Making friends is a lot easier than you think, everyone is in the same boat so it is normal to be nervous. You will soon be eating pizza in Shanowen after a night out in Diceys with a group of girls you feel like you’ve known for years. Mental note: avoid Diceys after first year, the sweatbox life isn’t fun.
This next part is important, don’t be intimidated to join whatever club or society you want. Don’t get me wrong it can be hard to branch out and put yourself out there, but you are only denying yourself the opportunity to make new friends and flourish in new experiences so swallow your fear, it will only hold you back.
Finally, tackling the 109A Bus Éireann route is a pain in the you know what. Avoid the effort of carrying your sports bag to lectures and get yourself a locker for the year, best decision first year me ever made.
Struggling Third Year
Image Credit Laura Horan