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There are plenty of things about third year that I don’t like, but the biggest thing is that I’m always acutely aware that lurking just around the corner is graduation. Feeling sentimental on my 21st birthday I began to realise that this would be the last birthday I celebrated at university. Of course this isn’t completely a bad thing – the mandatory birthday shots almost killed me this year – but it made me think about all the things that I’ll miss about university when I’m gone.

Now I know being in third year doesn’t necessarily mean you won’t be coming back again next year, there’s always the Masters option, or for those of us spending our Christmas drunk, failing exams and coursework isn’t completely off the table. But for this third year student, it won’t be long until my time at university is at an end. So, here are the things that I will miss…

Cheap nights out and a 24 hour Macdonald’s

It’s easy to forget while living in the Midlands, just how expensive some nights out can be. For example, growing up in Bournemouth I’m used to spending almost a tenner on club entry and a good £30/40 on taxi fare. Plus, while in Nottingham it’s pretty common to see girls going out in Converse, on a night out back home there’s quite a bit of pressure to wear heels, so walking home is never an option. To make matters worse the end-of-night 20 box of nuggets is not an option as the nearest 24 hour Macdonald’s is a good 15 minutes away by car.

Uni friends

While I love my friends from home to bits, there’s something about staggering back to your uni flat, clutching at a half-eaten kebab, vomiting on your course books and passing out in the corridor, that really bonds you with your university friends. I can honestly say that the people I’ve lived with and known for the last three years know me more intimately than a psychiatrist ever could. And there’s something really quite disturbing, yet oddly satisfying about that. Plus, while you always know that you’ll see your home friends again in the holidays, after university there’s no guarantee you’ll be seeing the gang again anytime soon. Especially when I live on the south coast and two of my friends are from Hull. The experience of living with your university friends is essentially the feeling you got going on a school trip with friends at school… Just EVERY DAY for three years. So that’s definitely something I’ll miss.

“I can honestly say that the people I’ve lived with and known for the last three years know me more intimately than a psychiatrist ever could”

Cereal

Eating shit food

Going to university allows you a lot of freedoms you don’t have back home. For example, if you’re sick after a night out you don’t have to worry about your parents’ disappointed headshake, and you’re free to leave your washing up for whenever you feel like it. However the biggest freedom I’ve enjoyed at university is the ability to eat whatever I want without provoking judgement… Well my friends judge me but I have as much shit on them as they do on me so it’s kind of a judgey Mexican stand-off. But when I go back home (either for just the summer or forever… Please God don’t let it be forever) I’ll have to go back to eating three healthy meals a day at the appropriate times, i.e. breakfast at 12 and lunch at 4 is not acceptable in the Mallory household. So pretty soon I’ll have to say goodbye to my midnight snack of Chobo-Bons and Quavers and hello to steamed veg and shepherd’s pie.

There are other things I’ll miss about university, but these three are definitely top of the list. So if you’re in first, second or third year, make sure you make the most of your time at the University of Nottingham, because it really does go fast!

Natalie Mallory

Featured image: Jason Raia via Flickr. Embedded images: Mike Mozart & frankieleon via Flickr

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