Second year Check-in: Trying to Stay on Top of Things – OurWarwick
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Second year Check-in: Trying to Stay on Top of Things

Isabel Quah
Isabel Quah | Language, Culture and Communication Contact Isabel

Time has definitely flown by faster than I expected, and I can’t believe we are already entering into Week 7 of term 1. Second year is by far, more intense than first year was for sure, and I can’t stress this enough- freshers, savour the more relaxed vibe of your first year, because things really hit the roof once you start realising your grades start to count towards your degree. Asides from the academic chaos of course work and readings, society demands and CV updates are also slightly driving me insane. As an executive of three societies, the responsibilities of planning socials, attending weekly meetings and all the logistical work within the SU, is quite exhausting and it has really put my time management and organisation skills to the test. Whilst balancing all of these tasks I do feel like I have definitely become more self-aware and my leadership skills are developing overall.

Additionally, lot of time and energy has to be allotted towards updating your CV, as this is the time when people start applying for internships with aims to potentially secure a permanent slot in companies after graduation. The pressure is on, and it is very intimidating watching friends scrambling to sign up for tons workshops and talks at the Warwick myadvantage website, furiously typing away and trying to perfect cover letters and even attending formal interviews. Getting ahead of the game is really crucial during this period, and it is better to attend to these tasks before exam revision periods start. Being well-rounded is something employers do look out for to make sure that you have a healthy balance between academic and non-academic activities, as it shows certain aspects of your character and how you are able to engage in a variety of things rather than just being buried in course work all the time. Just make sure that you take on only what you can handle without over-burdening yourself.

Overall, I have a very positive outlook on this year; surrounded by many friends who are figures of support for me and a great way to relax and escape from stress, staying active in the gym and by attending figure skating sessions, and even letting creative urges take its course through music jam sessions with the Oriental Performance Society in the band room behind Dirty Duck. There are so many things to do in University and it only has really become apparent to me now as a second year. I have realised throughout these past few weeks, is that while it is important to be productive, it is also critical to be able to have some time to yourself to relax and do things you want to do. In the past I always put the needs of others and everything else over myself and that wasn’t something that was healthy for me because I ended up allotting all my time and attention for the needs of others that I ended up neglecting myself in terms of emotional and physical health. It’s amazing to think that after a year and a half, graduation will be right around the corner and soon I will soon be completely self reliant as an adult, ready to start a career. While it is a scary thing to think about, I do think that by the time this all approaches I will be ready to face the world and deal with the reality of complete independence of full on adulthood, but until then, I will continue to take this journey one step at a time.

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Isabel Quah
Isabel Quah | Language, Culture and Communication Contact Isabel

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