19 things every University graduate may experience - 1 year on

It's been almost 1 year since I finished University, walked into the 'real world' and now I'm finding myself nearing my 22nd birthday. I don't understand how quickly I've had to grow up and become an actual adult - not having my 'student' status to fall back on - but let me share with you what I've learnt in what has been a gruelling but rewarding year... 

  1. You're able to travel, whenever you want. Being in University holds you back from going to new places, with deadlines and lectures getting in the way of holidays. Once you graduate, the only thing holding you back is booking time off work which is so easy to do. Now, you can compulsively book at trip to wherever you want without thinking about missing too many lectures.
  2. You soon realise you can't drink as much as you used to. When I was in Uni, I was able to drink 2 cocktail pitchers and 8 sambuca shots in one night and still be standing. Now, I have 3 pints and I'm drunk as a skunk. Your alcohol tolerance goes waaaaay down and you realise you're not a teenager anymore.
  3. You discover who is worth sticking around for. It's true when they say that you make friends for life when you're at Uni. What they fail to tell you is that life gets in the way and you realise who is worth your time based on how they fit you into their life. I've lost friendships since leaving Uni, not because I - or they - wanted to, but being an adult you sort out priorities and sometimes it just doesn't work out. As sad as that is, I know that if a reunion was ever to happen, it'll be like nothing has changed.
  4. You will end up choosing a night in over a night out. You'll find that curling up with a blanket and watching films is more appealing that getting glammed up, dancing the night away, drinking too much and leaving the club at 5am.
  5. Nights out, however, will be more of a big deal. Juggling a social night life with a full time job is difficult but it makes it more enjoyable and fun to do it every once in a while.
  6. Slowly but surely, your Facebook feed will be filled with engagements, pregnancies and couples moving in. Adult life really comes into play when you finish Uni, and so do the babies, weddings and new houses. It's a real eye opener at times but absolutely lovely when you see your friends so happy.
  7. Hurrah! A normal sleeping pattern. Kind of. Gone are the days of slumming it until 4am then waking up past midday. Working a full time job actually requires sleep, trust me.
  8. Talking about working full time, it's nice to earn money that is actually YOURS. You can budget properly and spend your money more sensibly. You will have an itch sometimes where you want student life again but there is something kinda nice about doing well for yourself.
  9. Unemployment. Honestly, the worst time of my life was looking for a job - ANY job - when I graduated. I spent around 4 months looking and I was absolutely miserable. It will happen though, but stick at it, a job will come round soon enough.
  10. One of the worst things about graduating is people asking the dreaded question ... What are you doing now then? I recently went back to Uni to watch a performance and pretty much everyone asked whether I'd done any theatre work. But, the real world is different. Yes, I'm working at a job that I really enjoy but it's not what I want to do forever. But that's okay. Don't forget that you're still young. Not getting a job relating to your degree straight away is more common than you'd think.
  11. For those that lived away, moving back in with your parents will make you realise how independant you've become. It's nice, being back home, but I can assure you, it won't be long before you want to live independently again. University really helps young adults leave the nest and do their own thing.
  12. No more studying or lectures means you can actually spend time with loved ones. When I was at Uni, I struggled a lot trying to juggle my relationships outside of my little University bubble. Seeing more of loved ones is a real treat.
  13. Going back to number 10, you may doubt sometimes whether the time and money was worth it. I've thought to myself  'I studied a 3 year degree, put so much effort into it, ended up thousands of pounds in debt and now I work in a coffee shop'. Never doubt your degree, it will always come in handy - in your career and everyday life.
  14. Days off are way more precious. Honestly, I went to Uni about 3 days a week and spent a lot of my time just doing nothing in my second year. Now, having a day off from work is time to do things, not just laze about on the sofa all day.
  15. You may have a 'I can't afford food, bills are too expensive, I hate early mornings, I don't like being an adult' breakdown. You're not the only one.
  16. You will realise that the entire world is yours now. You can do absolutely anything you want if you put your mind to and work hard enough. There's a strange kind of freedom to being out of education. If you're like me, I've spent more of my life in education than not, and it's really refreshing to not have that commitment.
  17. Those couples who seemed strong will break up, and people you never expected to, will get together. Relationships can change drastically. I spent most of my life being the single friend and that was fine. Then as soon as I graduated, I found myself in a relationship and fell in love. It's not what I expected but I'm really happy.
  18. Deep down, you wouldn't change your time at University for the world. One night, you'll be in a club and a song will come on that will take you right back to your first Freshers week and you'll realise that there will always be a student inside you somewhere.
Thank you for reading, I hope you all enjoyed this post. Let me know if you want to see anything in particular. 
Until then, catch me on twitter and instagram 

Love, Melissa x


  1. Brilliant post - well done! You have a frank way of writing which I rwally enjoy. I hope you keep it up this time around!