What an exciting time. It’s the start of your first semester at Radboud University. Your campus is flooded with thousands of new students from around the world who will be starting their first year at university. For many students (and their parents), transitioning to university is an exciting yet daunting experience. Questions are racking your brain: Will I fit in? How will I make new friends? Am I going to survive my crazy hard Microeconomics course? Lix sat down with Radboud University student, Jurian van der Waal, who shared five study tips to help first-year students succeed in and out of the classroom. Let’s dig in.
Lix: What is one thing about Radboud University that every first-year student should know?
Jurian: At Radboud, there are so many possibilities for literally every student. It doesn’t matter where you come from, what your interests are, or what kind of things you like to do in your free time—there is a place for everyone here. You can choose from all kinds of associations, student unions and sports clubs, which are all housed on campus.
Lix: What has helped you survive a tough semester?
Jurian: When I had a lot of stress during exam periods, it really helped me to take a break every now and then at the Synergy office. The couch is perfect for a cup of coffee, a quick conversation and some stress relief.
Lix: What techniques do you use when studying for a big exam?
Jurian: I lock myself in the library during exam periods. Additionally, I make sure to be there on time, so I get a good start in the morning. Doing some running in the evening really helps to clear my head and helps me sleep better. During these big exam periods, I also make sure to take a break once every two hours.
Lix: What do you recommend to students who are struggling to make friends at a new university?
Jurian: Study and sports associations are great for making a lot of new friends, especially when you choose to become an active member by joining a committee. All of these organizations offer a lot of activities, which are not obligatory, but you can still join them any time you’d like.
Lix: What is the best advice you could give a first-year student?
Jurian: Make sure to enjoy every second of your university experience! Your student time is the best time of your life and there is so much to do besides studying. Join a student, study or sports association, attend all kinds of fun or interesting events and maybe even organize them yourself. This is not only fun, but it’s also very good for your resume.
Remember, university isn’t just about studying hard in order to achieve one’s career goals. It’s also about making lifelong friendships and connections. So go grab university life by the horns and enjoy the ride! We are rooting for you and wishing you the best as you start your first year of university. And if you need some help organizing your studies, we’re just one click away!
Jurian van der Waal is a Business Administration student at Radboud University and the Student and Commissioner of Internal Affairs at Synergy, an on-campus study association. In need of some more tips? Check out A Student’s Guide to Cheap and Free Things to Do in Nijmegen, where Jurian offers up some tips on where to eat, drink, shop and be entertained in Nijmegen on a student budget.