7 Things I Wish I Took Advantage Of When I Was Studying

Do you realise how expensive trains are after you graduate?

Brought to you by UNiDAYS


I always thought that studying was the yucky part of the before and after photo shoot. You get the boring and ugly part out of the way and the rest is shiny hair and perfect skin. But, as it turns out, the grass isn’t particularly greener, and hindsight is more like 40/20. 

After I finished my degree in proverbial phrases and metaphors, I suddenly wished I took advantage of the stuff I had at my fingertips for actual, literal years. Coincidentally, I drunkenly shouted all these things at a first-year student in a bar last week so I feel like an expert. (If you’re reading this, first-year, I’m only a little bit sorry.)

#1 All The Spare Time To Work On My Folio

You young people have literally all the time in the entire world. Just thinking about all the hours I spent not making myself employable makes me feel tingly and weird. When you study you only have to work like three days a week, leaving billions of hours to make cool stuff for your folio. 

After uni, time doesn’t run the same way. You have to pay full price for mini golf and work every minute you’re not sleeping (or playing mini golf). 

#2 Being Able To Take Internships

The Hills

(Image: The Hills/MTV)

Look, technically you can take internships at any point in your life, pre or post study. You just won’t get assistance from the government for it or be swimming in convenient student discounts.

I spent most of my undergrad apparently chasing old-timey hoops with a stick instead of applying to internships. Now, I have a barren and thirsty resume that begs me to feed it unpaid industry experience. Don’t be like me.

#3 Everything Being Cheap 

Jesus. Christ. Did you know how expensive it is to see a movie without concession? Or to get on a train? For me to buy a pair of jeans without my magical uni discount, I have to take out a loan and then still not have enough money for said jeans.

If I could travel back in time to my Bachelor I would win the lottery (with complicated time travel math genius, obvs) and spend it on heavily discounted experiences, services and miscellaneous goods I didn’t know I needed until I couldn’t live without them.

#4 Not Spending Every Single Second Freaking Out About Jobs

When I’m not obsessively cleaning my house — because it’s the only thing I have control over — I sit on the end of my bed, strain as hard as I can for 45 minutes then apply to every salaried position online that I can find.

I’ve dreamt of phone interviews and the end of probation period every night since I stepped out of studying. I also spend a lot of time grabbing random students by the shoulders and screaming in their face to cherish their time before the Career Goblin ruins everything.

#5 Uni Events

Ronny Chieng

(Image: Ronny Chieng: International Student/ABC)

Dude. In retrospect, uni events are amazing. Free trivia, free food, everyone is the same age as you and lives roughly the same lifestyle as you. There is always beer, and I don’t think any other situation will call for you to get drunk wearing a toga* (*bed sheet).

#6 Unadulterated Access To Industry Experts

When you’re a student, you meet lots of Very Important People in your field. They’re everywhere. Universities are basically lousy with industry experts, award-winning bros and all of your childhood heroes. Within the bonds of campus, they want to talk to you, maybe take a photo with you, and have a quick peek at what you’re working on.

Once you leave uni, these people cease to exist in the physical realm. You pretty much never meet anyone impressive, unless you count serving coffee to a minor celebrity at your hospo job.

Jeez, I wish I got more contact details. Jeez jeez jeez jeez. 

#7 Employable Things 

OK, I know this sounds especially bitter and old, but uni is so much fun. Apart from assignments, you don’t have a care in the world. Everything wrong you do is forgiven. You can hang out at bars in the middle of the day in between classes, join a cheerleading team, and eat pizza in the labs at 4am with all your buddies who are the same age as you. 

Life after school isn’t bad, it’s just teeming with responsibility and career pressure. You can make whatever kind of fabulous and insane experiment you want with all the free resources you could ever imagine. After all, you can’t get fired from uni.

Ass-saving advice in collaboration with UNiDAYS. No matter where you are, UNiDAYS saves students heaps on all the essentials, so you can live your best life.

(Lead image: Dear White People/Netflix)