Let’s face it, starting uni is a massive deal.

Not only is it the first time you’ll be taking on life Han Solo, but the whole experience is a mind-squelching combo of excitement, terror, and of course, intoxication.

Want to know exactly what you’ve got yourself into?

From the highs of making friends for life to the lows of a hangover that leaves you fighting for life, here’s the 17 stages of EVERY student’s life.

Yes, even yours.

1. The awkward arrival

You’re doing your best to play it cool, but it’s kinda impossible when your teary-eyed Mum is insisting on making your bed, unpacking your stuff, and putting 17 tins of Heinz beans in your kitchen cupboard.

2. Making first contact

You creep out of your bedroom and into the kitchen, only to find that the flatmates who arrived earlier have already begun the bonding process.

Do you act eager? Do you play it cool? Friendly?

Nope. You pretend to organise your collection of pans instead and hope they don’t think you’re weird. This is adulting, right?

3. The first party

So here goes. After years of hearing about the craziness of Freshers Week, you’re about to properly break the ice at your first sesh.

You’re wearing a yellow t-shirt, a clip-on tail, and a lion mane you got off Amazon, but you don’t care, ‘cause this is a BIG DEAL.

4. The first hangover

You went in hard, you spent a third of your loan, and you roared like a lion more times than you’d care to admit.

But now, rather predictably, your brain is taking the revenge it deserves, and you better get used to it, ‘cause this is your life for the next three years.

5. The communal hangover

During said hangover, you and your flatmates will crawl timidly into the kitchen, in search of moral support, food, and a confirmation that you didn’t actually fall over in McDonald’s.

You won’t get that last one. But you’ll laugh. You’ll probably cry. But more than anything else, you’ll have started to bond. Awww.

6. The best friend emerges…

Amidst all of the hustle and bustle of meeting all these strange new people, you quickly find somebody you make an instant connection with, and you just KNOW that this is the ‘uni friend’ you’ll keep for life…

7. …then it all falls apart

4 days later and you realise you have nothing in common, their accent is really annoying, and they have a fair few hygiene issues.

Now, how to politely break that promise that you would definitely get a house together next year?

8. Your first lecture

So you walk into the lecture hall, eager to learn. You’ve got your notepad, you listen intently and make loads of notes, and promise yourself that you will strike the perfect balance between study and leisure.

Ha. How sweet and naive of you.

9. Join 50 societies.

Still eager to get the most of the prestigious institute of learning your lucky to be studying at, you join loads of societies.

Drama. Debate. Skydiving.

You will not attend any of them.

10. The endless partying

With great independence, comes great responsibility.

You honestly thought you’d be able to handle your newfound freedom sensibly. But when you can literally crack open a can of beer/bottle of wine WHENEVER you like, you realise how weak of a human being you actually are.

11. Weird, pretentious people

You always heard that uni was full of eccentrics, but you never thought you’d actually meet a guy who wears a tophat all the time and lectures you mid-party about Hobbesian social theories and the artistic merits of Iranian New Wave cinema.

If you meet this guy, just walk away and never speak of him again.

12. The hungover lectures

Oh wow, look at you.

You really did a great job of striking that balance between study and leisure, as you’re lying down in a lecture still drunk from last night’s partying.

13. You basically forget you’re here to learn new stuff

Gone are the days where you deluded yourself into thinking you’d use your independence wisely.

By this point, you can’t remember the last time you read a set text or went to a lecture without a hangover. Well done you!

14. Fresher’s fifteen

You heard urban legends of the fresher’s fifteen – the inevitable 15 pounds of blubber you’d gain during 1st year – but you were certain it wouldn’t happen to you.

Newsflash: good intentions cannot counteract the calorific force of drinking and eating nothing but alcohol, pasta, and Chicken Village 6-piece meal deals.

15. Oh crap, I’ve actually got exams to pass

It wasn’t just a dream. You actually did come here to learn something, and now you’ve got pass an ACTUAL exam.

Why did no-one warn you of this?!

16. Library exile

You’ve learned literally nothing. It’s time to up your game.

You boldly go where no fresher has gone before, into the library to do some – eurgh – studying.

17. End of year party

Once exams are done and dusted and you’ve decided not to trouble yourself by overthinking what you wrote down, whether you spelt ‘furthermore’ correctly or any of that stuff, it’s time to retreat back into that beautiful world of partying for one last big one with the 4 awesome people you’ve met.


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