1. Join Clubs and Societies!
This is even more important for those students coming to UL alone. Joining clubs is the single best way to meet like-minded people and make friends in university. UL has some of the best clubs and societies in the country and it is a sure fire way to meet great people and make some really good friends!
2. Register for Modules, Quickly!
Ok so not very exciting…but better than paying a 200 euro fine! If you are not sure how, ask a friend or call into the students union or library for some help.
3. Visit the library!
You may also not think this one is very exciting, but at least go for the good WiFi! Trust me though, you will definitely need to be familiar with the library, and you do not want to arrive for the first time on week 12 when it is a war zone. The library staff are great and can help you do lots of things like find the books that you need (duh), help with essays and referencing and just general tips that can enhance your time at UL.
4. Go to Class
If you do nothing else, just attend lectures and tutorials, the temptation to skip is high, but the payoff for attending is higher. Attending scheduled lectures and tutorials gives you the best chance at succeeding academically. It is very easy to fall behind and become overwhelmed after missing a few classes, so try your best to take full advantage of the resources provided!
5. Get some exercise
So you are about to start living on your own…that means no more healthy home cooked dinners and you are going to have to survive on your own. That does not mean cheap pizzas and noodles! Join a club (see part one) that you enjoy and get some exercise, even better, visit the gym/pool. UL has some of the best sporting facilities in Ireland, so use them!
6. Find Yourself
Ok I know that this is cheesy, I do. But you have just started a new chapter in life, for most of you, far from home and you have a chance to discover lots of things about yourself. What drives you in life? What makes you happy? For most this is the first real experience of freedom so it is very important to use the extra time and freedom to discover who you want to be in life.
7. Have Fun!
Try to follow these tips, but do not forget to have fun! You are just starting some of the best years of your life and that is especially true for first years! Make lots of new friends, do what makes you happy and take full advantage of this year which will undoubtedly be one of the best of your life so far!