5 Ways to Make the Most of Your University Experience

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University can be a tough, exciting, fun, stressful, and memorable time for students across the world- and everyone’s University experience is different. I recently graduated from the University of York, and I’ve had a year to reflect on my time at University.

It was a fantastic time in my life, but there are always hurdles, bumps, and obstacles that come up as you navigate such a big time in your life.

Whether you’re starting University this year, you’re entering your final year, or you’re thinking about applying to University, I’ve put together 5 ways you can make the most of your University experience

These are not hard and fast rules, and everyone knows what they want from their University experience. What matters is that you’re happy with what you’re doing. These are just a few things I’ve had a chance to reflect on now I’ve graduated!

Push yourself

Everyone has things they like and things they don’t feel comfortable with- and when you start University it’s so important to establish your boundaries and know what you want from the experience.

However, it’s also a great idea to push yourself. Just like in life, there are positives to moving out of your comfort zone a little bit. 

This might mean making new friends, going to a house party, or joining a club or group. It’s so important to put your safety and mental health first when you’re at University, but it’s also about enjoying new experiences- so if there’s something you want to try but you feel nervous about it, try and slowly push yourself out of your comfort zone a little bit.

Act like a tourist

This is something I wish I had done as a student! If you’re in a new city, or even if you stay in your hometown, try and see your new home with fresh eyes. Starting University somewhere is a great opportunity to explore a new place, so make the most of that chance.

I studied in York, and I wish I had visited all the “tourist” places in the city, such as Betty’s and all of the historic sites.

Woman walks in a train station pulling a suitcase behind her
Photo by Alexandr Podvalny on Pexels.com

Find a balance

At University there needs to be a balance. You don’t want to just be working on your degree for three straight years, but you also don’t want to come out of the experience without achieving any of your academic goals.

Try and find a balance as much as you can. Enjoy time with friends and enjoy going out, but also make the most of the University experience, and the great academic environment you’re in. This balance is particularly important if you’re heading into your final year of University.

Get experience

Whatever your degree, try and get some experience before you get to your final year- and suddenly realise that you’re going to be out in the real world soon. Take it from someone who’s been spending a lot of time job-hunting, employers want experience!

This might mean getting a part-time job during the holidays, finding some volunteer work to enjoy, or applying for fantastic internships in London.

If you don’t know what you want to do after University, try out a few things. It’s better to try out something you might want to do as a career first, just in case it’s not something you enjoy.

Image of a person using a laptop on a desk, with a notepad next to her on the desk
Photo by Startup Stock Photos on Pexels.com

Stop putting pressure on yourself

While University can be an amazing experience, for some students it’s not the “best time” of their lives. In fact, I have a real hatred for this phrase. No time is the “best time” of your life if you’re unhappy, and you should never feel pressure to constantly be enjoying your University experience.

All students experience ups and downs. Don’t put any pressure on yourself to always enjoy yourself, and speak to someone at University if you’re struggling.

Do you have any tips for making the most of your University experience? Do you agree with my ideas for making the most of University? What was the best thing about your University experience?

Let me know all your thoughts in the comments below 🙂

Happy reading x

53 thoughts

  1. Some really useful tips here for any current or prospective students — I wish I’d had these when I was at uni! It’s such a great opportunity to make the most of this part of your life so I particularly like the idea of acting like a tourist. Thanks for sharing!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. These are amazing tips! I have never been to university, so will keep this for one of my sisters who just got back to studying. I think that finding opportunities to get experience and find a good balance is a must x

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I’m not at uni myself but I know some many people will appreciate this post and find it helpful. You’ve shared some really great tips! Thank you so much, I’ll be sharing this with friends Xo

    Elle – ellegracedeveson.com

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I love this!! During my time in college, I just pushed myself to say yes to everything. Which was good and bad. I definitely was a little stressed haha but looking back on it, I’m so glad I have so much experience under my belt! Lovely lovely post, Eleanor xx

    Lynn | https://www.lynnmumbingmejia.com

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Really great suggestions here!! my first year was the only year I could enjoy, and then covid happened. But making new friends, doing things out of my comfort zone, taking part in activities was a great experience. Loved this post

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I spent 7 years at Ohio State (2 degrees double major) and couldn’t agree more. I was a communication major and worked at the college radio station as well as two commercial stations my entire 4 years of undergraduate work. Joined a fraternity and served two years as social chairman planning all the parties. Invaluable experience. Oh and I went to class once and awhile too.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Wow that sounds so interesting, and great experience if it’s something you enjoyed! I’m glad you managed to balance everything, and have some great experience ready for when you’re applying for jobs. Thanks for sharing Rich 🙂

      Like

  7. Great tips! I sometimes feel like I didn’t make the most of my university experience but it was also tough completing 2 years during a pandemic so it was hard to make the most of it. I definitely agree about being a tourist in your city – it’s so fun!

    Tash – A Girl with a View

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I definitely agree that there shouldn’t be the pressure for it to be the ‘best time of your life’ because I really struggled with a lot of uni. But at the end of the day, I found what made it work for me. There are some great tips here, thanks for sharing and really useful for anyone in this stage of their life.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. My advice for anyone going to university, if you have concerns that you may have dyslexia, talk to your university about it and they’ll get you tested. I didn’t get my diagnosis until I started my postgraduate, if I’d of found our earlier, my life and my grades would have been a lot better

    Liked by 1 person

  10. These are really good tips and I’ve shared with my Uni friends! I personally don’t go to Uni, but taking on experiences and enjoying yourself is deffinitly something I have heard a lot of people recommend. Thanks for sharing, Em x

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Great tips for anyone starting University. I wish I had these back in the day. This brings back fond memories of my Uni experience. Thank you x

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Great tips here. It’s been a while since I was at university and I wished I’d made the most of it. But I’m also impressed with how much I did. I was also away from home and really got to experience life in another city and enjoy it. I joined societies and volunteered and those experiences taught me so much too. They were also great for my CV for future jobs!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s great Emma, me too! I think it’s great when you can take a step back from your experience and realise that you got a lot from it, and I certainly matured over those 3 years! That’s fantastic x

      Like

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