The graduate life isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. Sending resumes, writing cover letters and trying desperately to be that one out of a hundred applicants who lands the job isn’t ideal and there are so many things I miss about being a student at university.

1. Sleeping in

I’m not a morning person at all and it’s kind of sad that when I think about my time at uni, the first thing that comes to mind is all the sleeping I did. Being able to make your own timetable at uni means you can pretty much avoid any 8am starts if mornings aren’t your thing and online lectures meant I spent many hours dozing off to the voice of my lecturer while I tried to listen to lectures in bed. There’s nothing I miss more than being able to have a nap pretty much whenever I wanted.

2. Student discounts

Sneaky hint: take note of when your student ID expires. Chances are it’ll still be good even after you finish studying, so don’t chuck it away the day you graduate. Being an adult is expensive and cheap movie tickets, event passes and store discounts all rely on you being able to hand over a student ID, so hold onto it as long as you can. You might even be able to get away with a student travel card for a while, but no guarantees on this one.

3. The people you meet

Yeah, you’ve heard it a million times, but the people you meet and the friends you make at university aren’t like the friends you made at high school. For a lot of people (myself included) uni was a place where I could actually interact with other actual adults as opposed to the dickheads I went through final years with. At uni, people have left their bitchy side behind and tend to focus more on their futures rather than social politics and you can escape the drama of high school pretty easily.

4. Study opportunities

It was because of uni that I got to visit Malaysia and Singapore, not to mention being set up with an internship in any city in Australia I wanted. I was always the guy that just wanted to get in, get my degree and get out which meant I didn’t really try to get the most out of uni until my final year. But the sooner you branch out and actually get involved at uni, you’ll realise there’s a heap of opportunities to travel and get experience that you didn’t know about.

5. All the good stuff

Some of the best experiences of my life I had because of my time at uni. I’m still yet to come across one without its own bar and my friends and I would be tearing up karaoke every Wednesday night without exception. I spent uni games with hilarious people, drinking and trying to sober up enough before a game to beat our rivals. I spent hours in the library with my study group, complaining how fucked we were for the exam and counting down the days till mid-sem break. I scabbed as much food as I could from companies that gave out freebies on campus and drank more coffee than I thought my body could handle.

Uni is a get-out-what-you-put-in kind of place, and if you make an effort you’ll enjoy the crap out of your time there. I know you’re counting down the days till it’s over, but enjoy it while you can. The world is pretty big out there, so you might as well have fun in your little uni bubble while it lasts and get as much sleep as you can. You’ll miss it once it’s over, trust me.

brad mcdowellben

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