So I am about to start my second year of university and I thought that I would share some tips and dos and don'ts that I learned from my first year of university! I hope this helps :) (also sorry this is so long, but I wanted to give you the best advice I could!)
1. Go to your school before school starts and find all of your classes and the routes to and from them
It’s super important to get comfortable with your campus and where everything is. Obviously you don’t need to know everywhere and all the little paths before school starts, but I really recommend knowing where your classes are and how to get to them. I went a week or so before my classes and walked around the campus and found my classes. Because I this I never got lost on campus and had a stress-free first day :)
2. Find a study spot on campus
You spend a lot of your time on campus and sometimes people prefer to stay there super late instead of heading home or to their dorm to study. Finding a good study spot for yourself that is reliable and works for you is super important. For example, In my school, there are specific levels in the library where the noise level allowance ranges. I choose the quiet floor and I sit in a booth where I won’t be disturbed or distracted! Find what’s best for you and you can be the most productive.
3. Invest in a coffee/tea travel mug and coffee beans/tea leaves
On my campus we have at least 3 Starbucks and 4 Tim Horton’s coffee stands and they are ALWAYS lined up. People like to buy 1-2 coffees ranging from $3-5! The cost of that really does add up! If you are looking to save money I really recommend buying your own travel mug and coffee beans/tea leaves. I got an awesome travel mug with a tea infuser built in and it keeps my tea hot all day AND saved me a ton of money. Plus you don’t have to worry about standing in those horrible lines!
4. Go to class
Okay, not only are you paying a lot of money for classes, but they are meant to be attended. Missing a class or two to study for a major test will not kill you, however, constantly not going to class WILL affect your grade. Professors do not always test strictly from the textbook or their online notes. They also test from added information that they only provide in class. Going to class is so valuable and keeps you on the right track to success in that class.
5. Review constantly (don’t get behind)
This one is always difficult for me, so don’t get too upset if you get behind in your classes because everyone struggles with it. However, if you can stay on top of your classes by getting the homework done, doing the readings etc. it really helps when it comes to midterms and finals when you have to review for all 4 or 5 of your classes.
6. Try to make a schedule with breaks to relax and do homework
The great thing about university is that you get to choose your schedule. I have experienced 50 minute breaks between classes, 2 hour breaks, and 3 hour breaks. I really recommend scheduling breaks in between your classes because although you want to get home as soon as possible, you need to reenergize yourself and give yourself time to review in between classes. I loved my long breaks because I was still in the school mind frame and motivated to do my work as well as socialize a bit and eat lunch!
7. Try not to schedule more than 2-3 classes back-to-back
This goes sort of hand and hand with number 6. Classes range from 50-80 minutes long and therefore if you have 2-3 back-to-back classes you get super tired. You always want to be super attentive and awake during all of your classes and don’t want to be falling asleep in one because you just had two 80 minute classes before hand. Try to spread out your classes to give each class the optimal attention and effort!
8. Make a university folder on your computer (keep organized)
Half of the battle in university is keep yourself organized. With so many classes, note packets, midterms, homework etc. it’s hard to keep track of them all without having good organization skills. For online work and documents etc. I made a university folder on my computer and then made folders within my university folders of all my subjects. Any work I did I placed into their designated folders and it keeps me organized and I know where everything is!
9. Go to office hours
For those who don’t know, office hours are the time period where your professors will be in their office to answer questions that you have about their class. Try to not be intimidated to go to them because they are super helpful and nice and get to know your name and stuff. If you are a little nervous, bring a friend along who has questions as well! Getting answers directly from your professor one-on-one is SUPER beneficial and I recommend it!
10. Sit in the front
Sometimes this isn’t necessary, but I think it really does help! Especially in first year classes you have around 300-500 kids in 95% of your classes. Sometimes professors have good technology and really nice microphones and it can be okay if you sit further back, but even so, I still think it’s the best to sit in the front. Sitting in the front keeps you really focused and makes sure you can always hear the professor…things that are super important!
11. Use Ratemyprof.com (but also be careful)
If you haven’t heard of ratemyprof.com, it is a website for people to rate and look at rating of their professors at their university. Tons of students use it to help them choose their professors for their courses and it can be super helpful! However, people who tend to rate the professors give extreme reviews (either OMG I LOVE THEM or OMG AVOID), which can cause it to not always be the most reliable. I suggest using it as a guideline, but at the end of the day, you might not like a professor that people love you and you might love a professor that people hate. It’s really personal preference.
12. Learn to be independent
Something that I wasn’t too prepared for in university was the independence. You are responsible for you and have to be comfortable being by yourself a lot. You won’t always be socializing or with friends and you’ll eat alone. It’s not like OMG YOU’RE SO LAME BECAUSE YOU EAT ALONE….tons of people do it because everyone has separate schedules and sometimes you need to get work done alone and eat alone as well. University is really about learning how to be independent and do things yourself :)
13. Don’t party too much
People in their freshman year of university are always drawn to the bouncing nightlife. People go out to bars or night clubs multiple times a week and stay out until 2-3 a.m. and drink so much that their next day is ruined. Partying can be fun, but you have to be really careful to do it properly. First off, try to go out once a week AT MOST (twice a month would probably be best). Drinking costs money AND ruins the next because you’re exhausted and probably hungover. That could’ve been a day you could have studied for your tests or done your assignments! Just be careful with your amount of partying because it can cause your grades to slip.
14. Don’t be afraid to switch your Major
The most important thing to understand about university is that it’s a learning process. You might go into it thinking you want to go into engineering, but then find out you like chemistry instead. Don’t feel bad about switching your major because you will regret staying with something you don’t really like and aren’t passionate about!
So summer 2014 is coming to an end *cries* so I thought that I’d end it with a BANG! (it’s really not a bang, but you know whatever) and share my favourite beauty products of the summer with you.
1. Kat Von D Lock-It Tattoo Concealer $31 in Light 18
I was running out of concealer so I was looking for a new one that would work for covering up my under-eye circles and blemishes. Recently I had heard a lot of buzz about the Kat Von D concealer so I decided to try it out. It’s really great coverage, but doesn’t cake up underneath your eyes, which is super important AND it covers up blemishes or dark spots effortlessly with the tiniest amount of product. It’s a great long lasting, high coverage concealer!
When I heard about these cheek gels from Josie Maran I thought it was super unique and I am a blush-a-holic so obviously I had to get one. Not only is it super light weight, but it’s also a dream to blend along with being super pigmented. This blush is PERFECT for the summer and I’ve being loving it.
3. Benefit Sun Beam Highlighter $32 (mine is mini and came in a set)
If you watched any of my youtube videos over the years then you probably already know that me and all of the Benefit cheek stain/highlighters that come in those nail polish tubes are my jam. I love to break out sun beam in the summer because it’s a beautiful golden bronze that adds the perfect summer glow to your face. It’s super blend-able and has the perfect amount of shimmer that helps you look a LITTLE bit closer to a Victoria Secret Model….and who doesn’t want that?
4. Benefit Watt’s Up! Highlighter $36
Okay…so obviously I like Benefit’s highlighters. This is one of their newest products and I LOVE it. This cream champagne highlighter gives you the nicest sheen on your face. If I’m feeling a little dull or tired one day this highlighter makes me look like I’m healthy, glowing and GORGEOUS ;) It’s my go to highlighter if my face needs a pick me up.
5. NARS lipgloss $29 in Turkish Delight
Whenever I would hear about NARS lip glosses, people would always mention the shade Turkish Delight, so obviously when I got one for Channukah it was in that shade. I refuse to wear sticky lip glosses, so obviously this one is smooth as can be. It’s a beautiful light pink shade that is easy to throw on and gives you the perfect natural pinky-nude shade on your lips. I love its thin formula and creaminess in the summer. Definitely worth the price.
6. STILA Smudge Stick Waterproof Eye Liner $26 in Stingray
Using eyeliner in the summer always feels like a disaster waiting to happen, but I have been loving to tight-line my eyes with this stila liner. It makes my eyelashes look fuller without worrying about it transferring onto my upper lid, and it still looks super natural. I love how I don’t have to sharpen this eyeliner (hassle-free yay!) and that it’s waterproof. Perfect for summer!
7. BUXOM Lash Mascara $24 (I have a mini size)
I got this mascara in one of those Sephora mascara sets and this was by far my favourite. It lengthens really well, volumizes and separates! I love how it makes my lashes look and I definitely think that it’s a high-end mascara that is worth the price.
8. Illamasqua Nail Varnish $17 in Rare
This is my first Illamasqua nail polish and it’s great! This neon yellow just screams Summer. It makes you feel super fun and summery, and makes you look a little tanner. It’s a super unique colour and is definitely worth the splurge!
9. Essie Nail Polish $10 in Fiji
This is a very popular Essie nail polish and I understand why. It is the perfect pale pink AND it’s actually pigmented! I need this shade in my collection all the time, but especially in the summer. It’s so fresh and classic and makes you look so tan even when you’re pale. It’s pretty much a necessity for me in the summer and you should all buy it because you’ll love it.
10. American Apparel Nail Polish $9 in Neon Violet
This is my first American Apparel nail polish and I really like the formula. This neon purple is super unique and as I said before, neons in the summer are my favourite. So if you’re looking for a super gorgeous and bright purple nail polish check this one out!
11. Bumble and bumble Pret-a-powder $31
I have been trying out quite a few drugstore dry shampoos lately, but I finally decided to try a high end one! This is a dry shampoo, style extender, and texturizing powder all in one! TRIPLE THREAT BABY! Anyway, it is a white powder that you shake and massage into your hair. It gets rid of my oil while giving my hair volume and texture all in one! It’s super great if you have second or third day curls and want it to look a little fresher! I totally recommend.
12. LUSH It’s Raining Men Shower Gel $10
I picked this little baby size shower gel up while I was in Whistler, BC. I kept hearing awesome things about this scent so when I finally smelled it I was like OMG. It’s a very rich scent and is strong in the shower, but it’s literally scrumptious. It’s a honey scent with an underlying toffee scent, which makes it super luxurious and sweet. I love using it AND you can also use it as a shampoo (it worked well!) and you can smell like toffee fudge drizzled in honey….LIKE YASSSSSSS.
13. COACH Poppy Perfume $68
I got this lovely perfume as a gift, so that always gives me good memories, but it also smells so good. It’s a super fresh and bright scent with notes of cucumber, mandarin, and freesia, but also has a subtle sweetness and warmth to it as well with base notes of vanilla, marshmallow, and sandalwood. I absolutely love this perfume and it’s perfect for spring and summer!