Recently I had the stark realisation that I graduated three years ago. It took me a little while to comprehend but it dawned on me, I’ve now spent the same amount of time out of university as I did attending. Crazy!?

In the months after finishing university I couldn’t believe how quickly the last three years had gone. A further three years into the future and I can’t believe that time feels like it’s passed even quicker.

Here, I’d like to talk to those embarking on their journey and those who have just finished their life at university. Chapters opening and closing everywhere – just make sure you’ve got enough ink to write the stories.

To the freshers:

So, working chronologically it makes sense to offer my advice to those starting their university journey in the coming weeks.

Whatever you do, don’t try and be something you’re not. You’ll spend the next three years hating yourself and the experience, all because you can’t express yourself freely.

Prepare yourself to meet new people and accept them for who they are; your peers will be from all backgrounds, you have to learn to accept them.

Try to attend some lectures, you know, at least a few. Although in most instances, first year doesn’t actually go much towards your final grade, the theory learnt in first year is invaluable when it comes to your dissertation, so at least get the lecture notes.

Value your time at university. Every day will be different so time will flash past you without you really realising. As it did with me.

Keep an eye on the future and opportunities for experience in a sector you want to work in, it will pay dividends. The more internships the better I say, get out and work hard. It’ll be for nothing, but it’ll make being a leaver all that easier.

Lastly, understand your limits and be willing to say no sometimes. Yeah, you might get FOMO but seriously you don’t need to have a year long freshers flu.

To the leavers:

You’ll look back at the last three years and be astonished as to how quickly it all went. That is, until you start working and have a steady routine.

Yes, university has a routine. However, the working routine is completely different. As weeks, months and deadlines pass before your very eyes – but always remember to take stock of the here and now.

Before you know it, a year would have passed since leaving and you’d (hopefully) have a job you love.

Don’t lose touch with those closest to you at university; you might be miles apart now but your common interests and personalities brought you together for those three years.

Finally, give advice to those who are thinking of going to university but always respect that it may not be right for them.