Do you remember what you learnt in your first year at University?
I think I am going too far. Do remember what you learnt last semester?
If you studied something the night before and it comes out in the exam and you do well, does that make you smart?
If you did not study something for exam the night before and it comes out in the exam does that make you dumb?
University can be a very exciting, insightful, and stressful. But how do we maximise our experience at university?
I have seen a lot of students who come to University and have gone to classes and maybe a few social gatherings, but that is it. I strongly believe that you are not just in University just for the degree. In fact your degree is the minimum acquisition you get when you go to university. There are many skills, achievements, and experience that you can and should be striving to reach. I believe to get the maximum out of your time at University you should aspire to do the following things.
This is a list of my top 5 goals outside getting a degree:
Take an Investment Risk
Any investment opportunity you spot at university will most likely be risk free. Most people at university have no dependent, the worst that could happen is that you lose the money invested. Then you run back to your parents for pocket money. University is the perfect opportunity to test the waters without “drowning”. There is no such thing as a wasted investment there is only lessons learnt.
Your Network Is Your Networth. Everyone you meet at University has the potential to form part of your future business network. If you are proactive you will learn to align yourself with the people who you see future potential in. If we look at any industry or business, you notice that most people knew each other right from University or secondary school. This trend is more noticeable in politics. University is the cheapest networking opportunity you will ever have, this is because at university we are all very humble and open to making new friends because “nobody is a somebody” yet. People spend a lot of time and money to get into proximity with “important people”.
Develop Extracurricular Skills
University is probably the last time in your life when you actually own your time (i.e you do not work for someone else); why not invest in something free like different skills? University gives you ample opportunities to acquire new skills, there are so many different societies that offer various soft and technical skills. So many people develop many different skills such as trading, skydiving, public speaking etc. If you do not know how to make hair, learn. If you have always wanted to act, join the theater or acting club. If you never had the opportunity to learn new language, you can take a course.
Find Your Passion
A lot of us go to university not knowing what we want to do after. Sometimes, we do degrees enforced by our parents or peer pressure (this is absolutely fine). University is a perfect opportunity to find out what you want to do in the future, because you are away from your parents and your comfort zone. This only works when you apply yourself to trying new things. I have seen many people come to university and start a career in something completely different such as becoming a makeup artist, photographer, saxophonist etc. At the end of the day you will enjoy work more if you are passionate about it. Yes, this has been said by everyone and their mother and may be perceived as a cliche, but the secret about cliches is that “they remind and reassure us that we’re not alone, that others have trod this ground long ago” – Miguel Syjuco.
Achieve Good Grades
Needless to say this article wouldn’t be complete without this section. You need at least a 2.1 to maximise your university experience. This is very much achievable with good planning, discipline, and consistency. Having said that, your grades in NO WAY determine how successful you will be in life. Your attitude TO life is what determines your altitude IN life.
Photo Credit: Dreamstime | Michael Zhang