Your time at university is like a block of clay – you can mold it into whatever you want, but unless you go through the intense heat of the kiln, you cannot create a beautiful vase.
When I first started at King’s back in 2018, I was shocked at the lack of supervision compared to my experiences in India, where I was very much used to being babied. That however, is the beauty of university. In stark contrast to the atmosphere at school, university requires you to be self-motivated and responsible for your own work. No one will force you to attend lectures, or chase after you to submit coursework. However, if you fail to do all those things, it will negatively impact your own degree and final award. If you have clarity of thought and are fixated on making the most of the duration of your degree, you’ll have fun-filled busy days at university and they will culminate into a life-changing experience. On the other hand, if you’re constantly unmotivated and slacking, the time will fly by with very few enriching experiences. Due to this change in surroundings, it always takes freshers the first semester/year to adjust to university life and find a comfortable rhythm.
On the plus side, at university you study different aspects of the one subject you’re most interested in, instead of having to do a combination of some you hate and some you love, like in school. You delve into deeper aspects of basic concepts you’ve studied before and it’s fascinating how a simple equation you’ve used all through high school can be derived and proved from scratch. This in-depth study also helps you explore your interests further and ultimately choose a profession. The knowledge you gain at university is actionable instead of theoretical and therefore can be applied at the workplace in a plethora of different ways.
Outside your academic studies, university also provides plenty of free time to pursue hobbies and extra-curriculars in a big way, which is mostly limited at school. If you’re strategic here, co-curriculars /volunteering gigs can also be beneficial to your CV! Therefore your time at Uni not only provides you with a Bachelor’s degree but also with valuable identity capital which you can harness for the rest of your life.
Another great aspect of university which is quite different from school is it’s international composition. Your coursemates come from different parts of the world and this gives you the opportunity to learn about and understand different cultures, lifestyles and backgrounds. This sets you up for the rest of your life, as respecting varying beliefs and opinions is an essential – no matter what profession you choose.