3 THINGS UNIVERSITY TAUGHT ME
I am a graduate. Let’s just let that sink in for a moment.
I feel like I’ve been a student forever (I’m sure my parents will tell you I have been a student forever). I really dragged out my student experience, choosing to take a gap year prior to university in order to study something different and then taking what was effectively another gap year to study abroad in Barcelona. It’s been a crazy rollercoaster ride but, in hindsight, I had the best time at university. I made some lifelong friends and learned a lot of (tough) lessons. In addition to sharing my graduation outfit with you, I thought I’d share some of the most important lessons I learned whilst at university.
1) Live at Your Own Pace, Run Your Own Race.
I feel like that is a motivational quote right there! As a Law student there was a lot of pressure to go to Law firm open days, ‘network,’ obtain more work experience than you could even imagine possible and land that amazing training contract. As I touched on in my Life is Not A Race post, not having a post-degree plan made you seem like a bit of a crazy person. It seemed like you were a masochist, if you were studying Law and weren’t intending to go into corporate law at the end. Part of me actually went to study in Barcelona to buy myself more time to decide if I really wanted to pursue corporate law and try for a training contract. Ultimately and after a lot of soul searching, I decided that I didn’t really want to pursue law as a career. There were definitely times when I would compare myself to my friends and when I felt the pressure to just conform to the traditional Law student route. In the end, I’m really glad that I decided to just run my own race and not worry about what those around me are doing.
2) If you’re terrified, you’re probably making the right decision.
This one is also a good quote - feel free to borrow it. There were so many new experiences during my university journey that often made me feel apprehensive and sometimes downright terrified. Moving to a whole new city where I knew virtually no one (twice), making new friends, falling in love and making terrible decisions and not to mention undertaking a dissertation in an area I knew nothing about. Man it was a crazy ride! All of those decisions, however terrifying, were totally and completely worth it. They taught me so much about myself; about how I can achieve anything I set my mind to and persevere through the struggles; about being resilient, somewhat self-sufficient and dusting myself off when I fail. I can’t think of a time when going ahead with something that truly terrified me turned out to be the wrong course of action.
3) Not everyone in uni is your best friend!
I want to stress this point because you’ll make so many acquaintances in uni or people whom you think are cool but then later show you their true colours. Do not make the mistake of trusting everyone immediately because not everyone’s heart is as pure as yours. I fortunately have always been quite good at weeding out fake friends or good-time friends from the true friends but there were times in university where I was close to trusting people I shouldn’t have. University is such an interesting place because you’re thrown into a huge melting pot of people from all walks of life and everyone just wants to make friends and meet new people. However, some people are more concerned with being a BNOC or just knowing lots of people rather than actually making solid friendships. There were times when I found myself in friendship circles that I didn’t really gel with but had been thrown into out of convenience or where I had friends who were there for the laughs and the good times and their bad times but weren’t really supportive through my bad times. I think it’s important to know who to trust and who to keep your distance from. I’m not saying be frosty, but just know that not everyone is your best friend with your best interests at heart.
Here's what I wore
Top: Kim Dave Designs
Shoes: River Island
Leave me a comment below and let me know what lessons you learned from university!