After a successful first quarter at the University of Auckland, I’m thankful to be able to spend a few quiet days at home, and reflect on my experiences so far—before it all kicks off again in a couple of weeks’ time.
Rather than giving a long-winded recap of my first five weeks of study, I will instead summarise it by saying that the experience has so far exceeded my expectations. Although I have greatly missed my family in Christchurch, I’m fortunate for the wonders of telephony, and the myriad distractions that life in the halls provides.
For a more thorough review of my University experience thus far, take a read of my first three blog posts for The Inside Word, a blog written by first-year students at the University of Auckland.
- Apples and Pretzels, or How I Survived Week One of Student Life
- Clubs, Classes and ‘Crying Monday’
- Life in Auckland: What I’ve Seen and Done
The best part of University so far? Without a doubt, the independence it affords. And the free time.
This point was driven home to me by one of my lecturers the other day. After class, he was talking about how, when he got his first job, he looked back on his time at University and reminisced about how much time he had on his hands back then. Then he began teaching, and shortly after had a kid, only to realise how much free time he used to have at his last job. Now, after having completed a PhD while raising several kids and continuing to teach, he can only smile knowingly whenever he hears students say how they have so little time.
The message here, as I see it, is not to fill one’s schedule to the brim, but instead to devote time to the things that really matter — whether a hobby, sport, or further learning. It’s interesting how the work that matters most to us can often be sidelined by the mundane and comparatively unimportant tasks of day-to-day life.
I hope you’ve had a wonderful Easter weekend. A special thank you to all of the friendly people who have welcomed me to Auckland, and made me feel at home at University Hall. It’s been a great experience so far, and I look forward to more of the same in coming months.