Dear first year uni students in 2021, here are my 4 tips to thrive

by Apr 7, 2021

What a time to start university. While the pandemic has changed the ways of studying at universities around the globe, the nerves and excitement are still there for first year students as they race to campus for orientation week and the first lectures and classes (or maybe a big trek to the couch). 

It’s a huge achievement to be accepted into a university course so congratulations to all who are starting a course this year. Even without the pandemic it’s a huge lifestyle change where you’re about to face many hours of study and assessments. Most importantly, this is the beginning of your future career. How thrilling (and daunting).

To all the students who have started their first week, here are my four top tips to thrive in uni and start developing skills now. 


1. Be open to opportunities 

Stay open to opportunities that come your way – both those that you find, as well as opportunities that find their way to you. Maintain a good life balance and don’t take on more than you can handle, but remember to consider opportunities with an open mind. Enjoy the process and don’t be afraid to say ‘yes’. Think about the long term benefits and how the opportunity be an important stepping stone to something else. You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take! 


2. Set yourself some clear goals 

This will help you to develop a career plan with bigger picture thinking in relation to your industry and dream gig. Think about enhancing your transferable or soft skills like building your confidence or nailing your organisation skills. Make sure these goals set your soul on fire beyond the theory, the studies and the subjects! This will keep you going through any tough times or stressful moments at uni, keeping the bigger picture in mind.


3. Take active steps

In order to start your career off with a bang, take steps to get out there and gain real world experiences. Are you passionate about a charity? Could you volunteer in your community? What about getting involved with uni clubs and societies? These are great ways to meet likeminded people and get some experience. The sooner you start the sooner you’ll be able to get the most out of your new learnings and test things out along the way. There’s no better way to get your brain into gear and retain the information you learn than putting theory into practice.


4. Start building your network now

It’s never too early to start! Put yourself out there to meet new people whether it’s networking with peers, academics and industry professionals, or attending face-to-face or virtual events. Once you’ve started building rapport, you should try to connect with them on LinkedIn to retain and nurture the connection. Established connections will be so valuable as your ride through different stages on your career, so take people along with you on your journey, starting now!


What would be your top piece of advice for students starting university this year?


Featured image courtesy of Pexels

Rachel King

Rachel King

Director of Wild PR

An energetic, passionate and conscientious self-starter, Rachel is a seasoned communications professional with established media and influencer relationships and experience leading sophisticated campaigns. Rachel has been working in public relations, content creation and event management for over eight years and has managed and executed integrated communications strategies for over 50 brands. With experience working across multiple categories, Rachel specialises in technology, travel, beauty and lifestyle. In 2019, Rachel was shortlisted for ‘PR Talent’ of the year in the Mumbrella neXt Awards.