7 Survival Tips for U of L

Written by: Andres Salazar

Welcome to the University of Lethbridge! You’re looking straight down a road of parties, homework, test anxiety and heartburn from Urban Market cafeteria. Going into your first semester and year is exciting, and the first year is full of good times and awesome memories to come, but it’s not always perfect. Being a student at the UofL has its own challenges. Here are some tips to help you survive your first year!

1)      Take a nap at the pool

If there is one word to describe the average university student, it would be the word “tired.” At one point or another, you will be overwhelmed with homework and exam preparations. We all need a break at some point, and the pool seating area gives a perfect opportunity to relax. It’s warm, humid and the carpet makes for a pretty decent napping experience. Just be sure that you wake up in time for your next class. 

2)      Find YOUR bathroom

It’s important to be ready for those moments when nature calls. Really, nothing is more stressful than running to the washroom, only to find a swamp of nastiness. If there’s one tip to follow from this list, it’s to find a clean, usually empty washroom somewhere in the university that is worthy of your trust. Find that one restroom you’ll always feel comfortable in and treat it like a home base. 

3)      Practice your track & field skills

Did you finish building your class schedule, only to find out you have only 15 minutes to get from PE250 all the way to the bottom of UHall? Well, get stretching, buy yourself the newest Nike runners and map out your route because you’ll have to sprint from one side of the university to the other. In no time, you’ll learn to run like Usain Bolt and avoid running into people like an NFL hall of fame member. There are different ways to get around the university; make sure to walk around and get to know the campus so that your daily run goes through as smoothly as possible.

4)      Join your class’ group chats

Most classes will come together on platforms like Snapchat or Discord. In these group chats, students will get to know each other, help each other with assignments and organize group study sessions. It’s a great way to get to know your peers and to help you feel less stressed. Class group chats are fantastic when people come together as a mini community and help one another, as long as no one tries to slide into someone’s DMs. You might also encounter the one person who hops on the chat a couple of hours before the assignment’s deadline, but hey, we’re all going to be that guy at one point or another. 

5)      Join a club

At the beginning of every semester, you’ll find “rush week,”where all of the university’s clubs have a chance to reach new people. You’ll find clubs for all sorts of activities and communities: hiking, language learning, and even a club to play Super Smash Bros. Joining a club is an excellent way to make friends, find resources to help you with your classes, and a great way to take your mind off of the busy semester that awaits. Most clubs will meet regularly, allowing you to get to know the university’s community well. Or, you know, you could sign up, never check your email and decide to stay home and watch Netflix instead of going to the events because you’re so busy that giving yourself more things to do is fatal.

6)      Did you know that the university gives you free stuff?

We all know that we’re all spending thousands of dollars each semester to go to school (although sometimes “school” is us at our desks at home in our pajamas), but did you know that the university will give you some free groceries? Make sure you keep up with the university’s emails; you’ll sometimes find opportunities for some free groceries, care packages and mental health kits. As long as you’re okay with going through thousands of emails about the university’s alarm tests and facility maintenance, you’ll be sure to find something that will help you get through the first semester!

7)      Go to the gym

Being a student at the university will give you the luxury of going to the gym whenever you want (as long as it is between the hours of 5:30 am-11:00 pm). Hitting the weights or getting some cardio in is an awesome way to stay physically and mentally fit for the upcoming months. Be sure to make it a goal of yours to stay healthy by exercising regularly. Will you be too busy to keep up a consistent workout routine? Probably. But hey, who needs good grades when you can get some sick gains?

If you follow these tips, you can bet that your first semester here at the University of Lethbridge will go smoothly! Although our tips are sure to help you out, don’t forget that you will still make mistakes. Don’t be afraid to mess up at times. That’s what students do. Instead, be sure to enjoy your first semester as much as possible.

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