Four tips for university life as a first-year student


Hi, my name is Angela and I am a second-year student at Ontario Tech University. You may be wondering what university life is like. Well, I’m here to give you some details and helpful tips that I wish I knew going into my first year.

1. Be open-minded

During high school, I heard all sorts of stories about university life from students at different post-secondary schools and I was worried about how it would go for me. But the worries I had started to fade away once I began university myself. 

Big Bang Theory Sheldon breathing into paper bag

After my first year, I’d say it’s best to go into something new with an open mind and build your opinions for yourself—the experiences of others won’t be the same as yours.

2. Don't be afraid to ask for help

There are many things that can become stressful during the school year, such as coursework, assignments and exams. It’s always nice to have someone to go to for support when things get tough. 

Thankfully, Ontario Tech has many resources you can go to for help. These resources are included in your tuition, so don’t be afraid to take advantage of all the ways the university can support you during your time here. 

3. Enjoy the experience

I really enjoyed my first year of university, despite it being online. Ontario Tech offers a great blended-learning environment that made the transition from high school so much easier. I can only imagine how great the experience will be once we’re back on campus!

I noticed even before my first semester had started that all of the staff and faculty members were so kind. I’m not afraid to ask for support when I need it because I know there is always someone happy to help

4. Get involved

So far I have joined the Ambassador Program and I’m looking forward to getting more involved throughout the rest of my years here. I think a great way to have fun in anything you do is to get involved, meet friends and have fun.

There are lots of involvement opportunities at Ontario Tech—from clubs and societies to volunteering, there are several ways to make the most out of your time here.

board game pieces close together

Now that I've provided some tips and tricks, here's what a typical day looks like for me:

Once I wake up, I do my morning routine and then go to a couple of classes throughout the day. The length of a class ranges from 1.5 to 3 hours, depending on if it’s a lecture, lab or tutorial. 

I like to use the time between classes to take a short break before doing some review or working on assignments. When I’m done with classes, I’m usually doing quizzes and lab reports, then I spend some time with my family and do the things I enjoy for fun.

Learning how to stay organized and manage your time are important skills that will help you stay on top of your studies, while also taking care of yourself. Don’t worry, if they aren’t your strongest skills they will build throughout your academic career.

you got this

I hope I helped answer some of your questions about what your first year of university may look like; remember, everyone’s experience will be different. 

Blog written by: Angela Karimzad

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