Hey there, hope you don’t mind the ‘fashionably’ late blog post this far into the semester, but better late than never, right! Anyway, I’m Renee, a second-year studying Bachelor of Arts & Global Studies. I’ve been following the Inside Word since I was a Year 12, so I am incredibly grateful to write/vlog for you this year!

Now that we’re in the last week of the semester, here’s 12 things I’ve learned each week!

  1. Having a level three lockdown announcement the weekend before uni started to hit hard. It was an ‘ugh, not again’ moment, considering that 90% of my first year was spent online. If there’s anything I learned this week, it was that with uni still being online, it was to get organised because the second-year workload is no joke.
  1. With uni still being online, I learned to appreciate that what I have is more than enough. I was grateful for technology to spontaneously jump on zoom calls with my friends and family. Just as I was getting used to studying from home, Auckland got the ✅ to go back to level one!
  1. Group work + field trips = excuse to get an extension for your assignments
  1. I learned to love group work because it’s a subtle way to make friends throughout your uni career.
  1. I got no work done during mid-sem break, yikeeeees. So, I took this as a lesson, knowing that I will not be productive at home. Best to stay at campus till your bum hurts from sitting. 🤪
  1. No one ever studies on floor two or three of the Gen Library, so I think I’ve found my new hiding place! If you’re planning to come to UoA, and need a serious study session, those floors nice and quiet. Don’t tell too many people though, or it’ll get busy and we’ll all need to find somewhere else!
  1. This week was tough, but what I learnt is that if it’s important to me, I will prioritise it and make room in my life for other things that I love.
  1. The grind truly never stops. Even if you are passionate about what you are doing, tough times do come, and boy, do they strike you. Guess I never really had this realisation with uni online last year. Whaaaat an experience I have this year.
  1. I also said sorry to my computer numerous times. I learnt that two screens are so much more helpful than just a tiny laptop screen. I got work done 2x faster – make use of those computers at uni, peeps!! They’re everywhere!
  1. As I am the type of person who literally doesn’t stop to get work done (ask my friends), I learnt that it is okay to take a day off uni and do nothing. Literally nothing. Don’t let uni rule over your life. It’s supposed to be the best years of your life (I hope). Ugly Betty came in clutch this week.
  1. The workload throughout uni is pretty much like a standard distribution curve. Well, in my opinion. Just a reminder to myself to not get too attached to uni work and the lifestyle. Don’t become the person where ‘uni’ is their only personality trait.

So, there you have it, 12 things I have learnt/experienced during my first ‘real’ semester of uni. While there was a time where I had something due every day for two weeks, I’m so happy that I did not have to do uni online for another semester. Safe to say, that my assignments, extra-curricular activities, and social events only made me stronger.

Suppose there is anything you should take away from this: the momentum keeps you going, you will have a love-hate relationship with 8 AM labs, and I don’t know how to study for in-class tests anymore.