First Year Finished – What I learned
Hi everyone!I’ve seen a couple posts on here with reflections on the past year and I thought I’d add to it from the perspective of a first-year econ student. I don’t think I necessarily have clearly demarcated positive and negative reflections but on the whole, it was a good year, although cut short and quite different from what I imagined.
Firstly, I’m going to consider the academics. Looking back at whatever assessments I’ve had the past year as well as the content overall, I would say I did pretty well, although I could’ve done better. I think in the beginning, I had a lot to learn because I hadn’t done economics in high school and because there is a change in what is expected of you. For example, we had a group essay assignment and I didn’t do so well on it but I learned how to improve my writing and when I reached out to my tutor to understand how to improve, she was extremely helpful and gave me detailed feedback which helped me get a first on my second essay for that module. On the whole, I think I could have been more proactive in asking questions and revising regularly, which would have helped me immensely for ongoing assessments and for exams (although I didn’t have them this year). I think I started off the year well, being on top of everything academically but as the months went on and I got busier (and winter came!), I found it harder to keep up and stay motivated. Learning to manage my time is a lesson I’m still completing, because as I explore more things to do, I also need to consider how I can balance all my interests. My takeaway for second year is to start off strong and keep it up by finding people to do it with – I will have my friends to support me and I think I have learned what I need to do to not just maintain good grades, but to improve my grades as well.
However, it’s not all academic and there’s so much I learned about myself this year as well. I feel that I have become more confident and sociable after coming to uni and I’m truly grateful for all the wonderful people I’ve met at uni. If you’ve been reading my posts, you probably know how much I love societies. Here it is again – I think societies have been the best part of uni, not just because of how it helped me meet people (my best friend included!) but also because of the work I do with the societies I’m involved in. I’m so glad I took the opportunity to go to as many events as possible because I’m really not sure what it’s going to be like next year. I do have one regret in this department though – I wish I had gone out more. Clubbing is a big part of social life at uni and I was rather apprehensive about this when I started because I am a teetotaller and do not really enjoy clubbing that much. I had the same attitude and did not go out clubbing at all, only going to a couple low key house parties and a ball. I didn’t feel like I was missing out but now, after coronavirus, I’m not sure when clubs will open again and so it makes me feel like I should have gone out more. I still don’t know if I will, when they open but it’s always good to have the choice 😉
What I’m taking with me to second year is to continue doing what makes me happy and to be focused on my goals. I’m more involved in societies than ever but I’m also eager to start learning again and am planning how to study and manage my academics. I’m super excited to go back in October and live off campus with my friends and even though the uni experience will probably be quite different from first year, I’m looking forward to see what comes and make the best of it! Here’s to a finished first year and a great second year!