As a young homebody from the Sunshine Coast, who had gone to a local primary school and high school, surrounded by the same friends for 12 years, the thought of suddenly heading to university in Brisbane with no one I knew was terrifying.
I was a shy and quiet person, but during Orientation Week of my first year, I forced myself out of my comfort zone. I took a deep breath and simply walked up to other people and introduced myself. Before I knew it, I’d met a handful of other students in my position, who were taking the same subjects as me, who were interested in the same things, and who eventually became my close uni friends.
During the first couple of weeks of uni, my new friends and I stuck together. We had lunch together, we shared our stories, we supported each other through the sudden independence that university expects of you. By the end of first semester of my first year, I was a confident, successful, flourishing student who loved where I was at in life. I’d made new friends, I was happy in my choice of uni and what I was studying, and I was on my way to becoming the person I wanted to be with a rewarding career.
I’m in my third year of uni now, with the same friends, the same outlook on life, and the same goals for the future. Although some of my friends have moved onto different paths, we are still close and catch up regularly. If I could give advice to any first year students having hesitations about the big wide world of uni, it would be to put yourself out there, smile and say hello! Get involved in uni life and join some clubs – there’s a club for everyone and they’re a great way to meet people and have fun while studying. Trust me, you’ll be on your way to a great big adventure in no time!