The TOP 7 things to know before your first year at UVic.
1. Live in residence. This is a great way to meet people from a variety of different faculties. This might be your first opportunity to have a taste of freedom, being away from home. Residence is a not exactly full independence but it is a great step towards that. The friends I made in first year are still my close friends five years later.
2. Join clubs. Get involved. In my first year, I joined the UVic tennis club and snow club. The tennis club was a great way to meet those interested in playing tennis and the best part about it: you could be a beginner. The snow club was a lot of fun because they organized ski trips to Mt. Washington, which is our mountain on Vancouver Island (~3 hour drive). UVic has a great list of clubs to join and if they don’t have the club for you, you could start your own. You might even receive funding to help run your own club.
3. Take fun electives. In the 5 years that I have been at UVic, I have taken a range of electives, including a course on Hockey Night in Canada (a third year history class where I watched movies with Don Cherry and learned how hockey contributed to Canada’s identity). THEA 150 (Public Speaking), was an awesome class to develop skills in public speaking which will help you in your career. THEA 122 (The Acting Experience) was a fun experience where it almost felt like it shouldn’t be a class. CHEM 231 (Intro into Organic Chemistry) certainly wasn’t a class for me, but perhaps you might discover it’s your thing.
4. Call home. Whether it be a quick phone call home to your mother, father, grandparent, cousin, best friend, or your dog, they would appreciate hearing from you. (Note: Skype is probably the best way to chat with your dog.)
5. Think about co-op. No need to sign up right away but start thinking about co-op, especially if it’s not a mandatory component of your degree. Many say they “don’t have time for co-op” but let me tell you, from personal experience, co-op work terms will open your doors to endless opportunities. (More to come on this in a future blog…)
6. We thank the bus driver. With your student ID you will get a bus pass and, while many students often walk, bike, drive or roll out of bed from res, a good portion of students take the bus to school and you’ll notice that we thank the bus driver. It’s a thing we do.
7. Learn the art of power naps. If you haven’t already mastered this, try it out. 20 minutes. No more, no less. If you have a busy schedule with school, work, sports, volunteer activities and hanging out with friends, it is important to balance your energy. (More to come on this in a future blog as I personally think I am the queen of napping.)
In conclusion, take advantage of any opportunity available to you at UVic and I can guarantee that you will not have any regrets.