A day in the life of a third year is all fun and games! Right? Well if by fun you mean dissertation stress, Master’s applications, or job searching; and if by games you mean working for finals to make sure you don’t mess it up – then yeah, a day in the life of me is so chilled!
No, honestly, I’m kidding, in a sort of ironic way. Being a third year comes out of nowhere. You spend three years of your life at a university that helps to shape you and all of a sudden, BAM! You’re looking at the calendar and realise you’ve only got 4 months left, a dissertation to finish, a job to get, a masters programme to get a place for and smash your way through your exams. Also ‘fun’ is about to become a weekend task rather than an entire week job.
Realistically, as a third year, you should be a well rounded adult, but let’s be honest, you’re more like a big kid. It’s that weird interim phase where the structure of school and invariably NCH is slowly falling away. For better or worse, the phase of your life where people chase you up and still hold some responsibility for you is nearly over. Now you’re on your own and that’s brilliant and scary but mostly brilliant.
If you’re anything like the majority of millennials, you’re a hot mess (I’m kidding – relax). You balance work and play in a way that’s sort of dysfunctional but somehow works. You’re writing a dissertation about something you love, and you’re super committed to the subject; your research is broadening YOUR interests. Eventually that ray of sunshine becomes a dark, stormy cloud and the bane of your existence and you just want to see the back of it…so when that deadline hits and you’re finally done – grab some friends and get a drink!! You deserve it.
You go out quite a lot and see people, while working through your essays and most definitely avoid looking at your bank account because you’ve slowly been drying it up for the last three years – all the choices you made were 100% worth it, but you’re also a little bit broke. (If you’re not, well done you!) That heart attack that you used to get when logging on, doesn’t really happen anymore. In reality you’ve just to used to seeing the low digits in your account. Instead it comes from the copious amounts of coffee you consume on a daily basis – but knowing you, you’re probably a seasoned veteran and have about 8 cups a day…
Am I selling it yet?
You also feel really, really old. The first years, however lovely they are, were born two to three years after you were. You’re now the epitome of a 90’s kid. Some of these wonderful people were born in 2000! Maybe that’ll induce the heart attack…
Graduates often ask whether you’re bored of the university routine by February/March and sometimes the answer is yes. And yet, I love being a third year. Despite all the stress and the buzz from the daily grind. Weird nostalgia kicks in when your timetable starts to empty up and you have to get your backside in gear on your own. University gives you some of the best years of your life, and for that everything is more or less worth it.
There’s a weird fondness for the degree you’re nearly finished with, the amazing friends you’ve made, and the next step is within the reach, even if you don’t know where you’re going yet.