This article was written by an external contributor. Lucy Pegg reveals her plan to beat final-year blues…
Final year students face a lot of pressures. There’s the work, the job applications, the constant anxiety that you aren’t actually built to survive in the post-university world. On top of all that is a nagging feeling that you’ve been kicking around your university for a long while now; you just feel a bit old, the peppy enthusiasm of freshers not quite catching on.
Realising you’re a final year might leave you feeling funny, but there’s no need to let the doom and gloom overwhelm you. Pull yourself out of that rut and inject some vigour into your year with our plan to beat the finalist blues.
Take the lead
You know what’s a better word than old? Experienced. And if you’re in your last year of uni that’s exactly what you are now.
Being a final year means you have the opportunity to take on leadership roles within your university, whether that be in a society, in student media, in your student’s union, or something more academic like being a student rep for your course.
Not only does this stuff look good on your CV, but it’ll bring you into contact with a new circle of people and give you a fresh and shiny new thing to do on campus.
Let yourself have a social life
It can feel like there’s a pressure in final year to be working all the time. Your dissertation is a looming presence and it feels as though every spare moment must be used productively.
Whilst you should certainly aim to ace your courses, that doesn’t mean there isn’t time for fun, too. Make sure you still have a big night out once in a while or, if you want to stay hangover free, gather your friends for a meal at a restaurant. This might be your last year of student life so embrace it – it’s not just freshers who get to have all the fun.
Escape your campus
Whether you’re at a campus university or not, the buildings, streets and squares that make up your institution can quickly become claustrophobic. They’ve got a tendency to not change too much and are probably saturated with memories of stupidity and stress from your first and second years.
You’ll feel much fresher if you let yourself get away from it all; do some work in a café in town as a treat, or have a go at using the public library rather than the university library for a change. If you’re feeling really crazy, you could even go on a day trip in the local area.
If you’re anything like me it’ll surprise you how little you’ve travelled outside your student bubble since you started studying.
Put the nostalgia on hold
Don’t live in the past. Just because Facebook wants to remind you that it’s been three years since that epic party in second year, that doesn’t mean you have to be constantly looking backwards.
Hold on to your fond memories, but live in the present too. Maybe they have redesigned your favourite haunts, but perhaps they now have a cool menu or some hip decor. It might be final year, but you can still make new friends, embrace changes to your university and find some new favourites.
Embrace your wisdom
Finally, why not just embrace the fact that you’re a finalist? After all, there are some perks to having been around for a while. You know where the comfiest seats in the library are and the best tactics to beating the lunch time queues at the campus café.
You’ve got a strategy for making your student loan last all term and for ploughing your way strategically through that reading list. With all that wisdom in place, it doesn’t matter if a few perky freshers make you feel old when you overhear them discussing which halls they live in.