Youíve finally been let free to live on your own. No mum, no dad, no dogÖjust you and the big, bad world. Dishes and clothes wonít wash themselves, no one can survive off curry forever. Waking up and going to lectures, washing and your general well-being is all down to you. No one will run around after you tidying your room, you can stay up as late as you like, eat as many sweets as you like and drink tilí your heartís content. However, like a kid in a sweetie shop, itís difficult to reign yourself in when faced with all this freedom. There are certain things that you need to know when it comes to attending university and living on your own. Here is your guide to social etiquette at university: the doís, the donítís, the absolutely neverísÖStick to this and your university life will be a breeze, people wonít think youíre too weird and youíll have an absolutely peachy time.
ē Donít be the one who turns up really late. University is a blast, but remember that you are there to learn (contrary to popular belief). Set your alarm, do your reading and go. You have plenty of time throughout the week to catch up on your sleep through a series of naps and some lie-ins. If youíre going to be late or miss a lecture then make sure you email your lecturer and apologise - you may feel like youíre one of many but itís important to let them know that you appreciate theyíre not wasting their time, and also it gets your name known which is never a bad thing.
ē Donít be the one who falls asleep. People will notice, they will take pictures and you will end up on a ĎSpotted at Universityí page on Facebook. You have been warned.
ē Donít be the one who talks through the entire thing. Annoying, annoying and annoying. If youíve managed to drag yourself out of bed and painfully walk to make your 9am lecture on time, you want to make sure that itís beneficial to you and that you are actually making the most of it and learning. There is nothing more frustrating than trying to concentrate and being distracted by someoneís tale of lost dignity on a Friday night. By all means whisper, but if youíre going to have a casual chat in the middle of a lecture then you may as well just stay at home.
ē Donít be the one who hasnít had a scrub after carnage. Though you may be too hungover to realise, being covered in obscenities and smelling of shame is really not a great look. It doesnít quite scream ďIím ready to learnĒ, not that you would be after a few too many VKís...
In your halls/home
ē Donít be the one who doesnít clean up after themselves. Mess is not cool. Do whatever you like in your room because itís only you which has to live with it, but in communal areas try and keep it clean. This means doing your dishes on time and properly disposing of all your rubbish. At the end of the day, no one wants to live in a pig sty and if you all try and look after the house it will be a much nicer place to be. Besides, no one wants mice or rats do they?
ē Donít be the one who stinks out the kitchen. Try and keep disgustingly smelly food to a minimum. This means if youíre eating a tuna, fish sauce, egg and blue cheese sandwich, open the window, spray some air freshener and keep it all in a plastic container. No one wants to eat tasty food in a smelly kitchen, and though you think your inventive concoction is delicious, you need to face the facts: it stinks. No oneís saying that you arenít allowed to eat, just try and be considerate to others, thatís all.
ē Donít be the one who doesnít help out. Housework is work which needs to be done around the house. This means if you share the house, then you should share the work. Why not create a rota to avoid arguments? That way itís all fair, there are no arguments and your house stays nice and clean. No one wants to clean up after anybody else and people are going to get pretty cheesed off awfully quickly if you arenít pulling your weight.
ē Donít be the one who stays up late listening to loud music. By all means stay up as late as you like and listen to whatever you want, but pop your headphones in if itís an unreasonable hour. Just because you have the day off tomorrow doesnít mean that everyone else has! Try and think of others.
When youíre out
ē Donít be the one that gets too drunk. Iím aware that this point is fairly inevitable and is bound to happen at least once in every studentís life. But if youíre one of those who doesnít know their limits and gets consistently too drunk meaning everyone else has to look after you, people are going to start getting annoyed. Who wants to spend their night babysitting their mate? Itís not fun at all. Once in a while, letís be honest, itís funny, but every time? Not cool.
ē Donít be the one that doesnít dress appropriately. You will attract all the attention in all the wrong ways. You need to make sure that you look and feel nice without perhaps revealing a little too much. Ladies, remember the rule, if youíre revealing at the top then try and keep your skirts a modest length, or vice versa. Remember, if youíre getting really drunk then your modesty will get increasingly more difficult to cover up. Try and stay classy. Lads, nothing too tight and keep your colours matching, if youíre in doubt ask a girl. Thereís nothing wrong with standing out from the crowd but being the talk of the town is a different kettle of fish entirely.
ē Donít be the one who spends their night sharking anything that moves. No one likes a creepy sexual predator. Have a good time, enjoy yourself and if someone catches your eye then go for it. Chat up lines? Be careful, and try not to be too desperate.
ē Donít be the one who tries to remember their three dance classes from when they were five. If you think you can pole dance after a couple of vodkas, you canít. The same goes for break dancing, interpretive dance and any sort of sexy dancing. Relax and have fun, thatís what itís all about after all, but donít put yourself or anyone else for that matter in danger with something that only you thinks resembles body popping...
Anything besides this list is pretty much a free for all. University is where you will meet a variety of different characters and personalities so donít be scared to explore your own, just try and think of others at all times. Most importantly, enjoy yourself. Itís the opportunity of a lifetime!
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