The prospect of leaving school and moving on to a new stage of your life can be quite daunting. After all, you are moving away from home to a foreign place with new people and new experiences. You are in effect stepping outside your comfort zone. In this blog, Suhail Mayor (previous client of Gabbitas and now studying Law at Royal Holloway) shares his experiences of his first year at university.
As you say goodbye to the people you have spent your formative years with and hello to the next steps in your academic career it is hard not to feel emotionally vulnerable.
‘Nervousness, fear, excitement and curiosity’ – these are all justified natural reactions to the journey ahead of you.
Furthermore, it is hard not to raise questions such as:
- Am I going to fit in?
- Will I find the right friends?
- Is this course going to be insightful?
- Will I be able to cope with the environment?
In seeking to answer these questions it is important to realize that at the end of the day, the reality of your situation is that there is no one correct way to go about it. The best way to look at university is by comparing it to a clean slate. A second chance for some or a continuation of moments for others to be the best individual one can be.
Everything has a time and place. You will be pleasantly surprised by how eager people are to meet each other. After all everyone is in the same boat, so the most crucial thing is to be yourself and honest about whom you are. Through that you will naturally find the right group of people. To those of you who are more introverted and scared to open up, stepping outside your comfort zone and just saying hello can make a huge difference. Everyone wants to be fit in and you will in some form or another.
The biggest fear could also about what you want to do with your life. It is completely understandable if you do not have your entire future planned out (although some aspiring individuals definitely do which is always a bonus). Small goals are helpful and although you may be worried about which direction to go, a path will always find itself. Just trust in your actions and imbibe as much of the course as you can.
In addition, university isn’t like school; it’s about understanding your individuality and learning about where you want to go. The expectations you set will be the way you spend the rest of your year. No one is going to tell you what to do, when to wake up or how to go about your day. Yet, isn’t that the whole point of growing up?
This time that you have in your life is going to fly by before you know it; so treasure these moments. University is said to provide some of the most memorable experiences and these are all dependent on how you choose to live them. Going in with an open mind is perhaps the most important truth one can tell. Be accepting of others and always seek to put your best foot forward.
On a side note, first impressions last. The way you see yourself is the way other people will perceive you. The beauty about university is that it caters to a diverse group of people from a multitude of backgrounds. Have ambition and don’t be afraid to stand up for what you believe in, however also understand other people’s points of view. The ability to listen more than anything is what separates the successful ones. If you are aiming for a certain standard in regards to a club, a position, a goal etc. it is helpful to know the right people in the relevant area. Getting connected to the people in the year above will really help with that. In university, what you will find is that taking the initiative is more central than waiting for the opportunity to come.
Based on these convictions at the end of the day, the main thing is to enjoy it. You have been blessed with an opportunity not a lot of people receive. So ensure that it is used to the fullest potential and make sure not to get caught down in the smaller problems life has to offer. If you are yourself and someone who is open to new concepts you will do brilliantly.
How we helped Suhail with his university application:
“Gabbitas Education has a wide range of services and amazing people catered to helping guide your introduction into university life. My experience here has been nothing but wonderful. They have given me the confidence to start off my year with a smile and a solid understanding about approaching education in the United Kingdom. With their help I have been able to consider my options and make important decisions in taking the next steps of my life. They have connected me with a plethora of institutions and given me the clarity in making the right choice of subject to study”
Suhail Mayor, Royal Holloway
“Since I first contracted Gabbitas to help my son consider options about studying in the United Kingdom I have been very satisfied with the level of attention and advice received. The people here are caring and very sincere to their cause. Asides from being the frontrunners in the education industry, if you are looking for genuine and valuable service/insight this is the place to look at. They go above and beyond every step of the way”
Hitesh Mayor, Father