By Kiera Thornton
Based on my first day back at university, the enthusiasm I displayed in my last Fresher’s Diary was greatly misplaced. What a nightmare. Due to a timetable mix up I ended up being late to my very first class of the semester as I went to the wrong room in the wrong building on the wrong side of campus.
This was followed by me sprinting across the campus to where the class was actually on, thinking I would be late and wanting the ground to open up and swallow me. I stumbled into the classroom on the second floor of the leviathan that is the Schrodinger Building only to find that only one other person was in class at that time and my tutor had not begun the class yet. What a brilliant start to semester number two at the University of Limerick for this particular intrepid fresher.
Then later in the day, I had to introduce myself to my new lecturer. I ended up stumbling, pronouncing basic words wrong and tripping over a chair when I had to pass the sign in sheet to my classmate. Talk about first impressions. I was genuinely devastated. All that being said, since my nightmarish first day, each day since has gotten better. Settling into university life has not taken very long and most of my enthusiasm has been retained. No more nightmare introductions to lecturers or being late for morning classes, thankfully, as I was close to losing the will to continue my studies that Monday.
Everything has settled down now. Granted, the most prominent problem I have encountered thus far has been in correcting my sleeping habits. While I have corrected my habit of getting up too late, I am yet to correct my habit of staying up until all hours the night beforehand. With a schedule that involves many long days, two-hour tutorials and the likes, it is not really ideal.
Furthermore my organisation is not up to scratch and, as someone who lives off campus, I simply cannot afford to leave essential materials at home. Yet I suppose this will be worked on over the semester, or at least I hope so. My procrastination needs to go too as I have learned of several very strenuous projects I will have to do over the next semester. Also here’s hoping group work on assessment-related assignments will be kept to a minimum because I just refuse to work with others on just about anything.
Speaking of assessment and projects, I have noticed that the workload of some of my modules has increased. The concepts and texts studied are more complex and in general it feels as if more is expected of me in my second semester. Some of my modules have completely changed and are based on entirely different areas of study. While I am trying not to think about my assessment too much at this early stage, I have assignments due as early as my third and fourth weeks which is nerve-wracking. The only negative outcome of my hard work last semester is the fairly high standard I have now set for myself which I feel as if I will struggle to maintain.
Alternatively, I could focus on the fun stuff. I intend on playing a much more active role in the societies I joined last semester going forward. Most of those are due to start again in the coming weeks and, societies having been one of the most enjoyable aspects of my first semester, I look forward to it. As more details emerge of events in the second semester (such as Charity Week for example), my anticipation for the next few weeks has built. Hopefully the mounting academic and social pressure will not have sent me into hysteria by the time you read the next installment of Fresher’s Diary.