Year 1, Part 2: How to make friends and influence lecturers
You’ve got the basics sorted, now it’s time to:
•meet your tutor and start those studies
•look out for a money-making opportunity
•be a social butterfly (or zombie) at the Halloween party
Budget for term 1
You’re in the virtual money! You’ll have a virtual £4000 this year. The first term’s £1500 has hit your account. You’ll get £1500 in term 2 and then £1000 for term 3.
Don’t forget there’s also an interest free overdraft facility of £1000.
You’ll still need to budget carefully so it doesn’t run out before the end of term.
There are so many choices. You decide you need to spend the following:
You’ve already signed up for halls and this is the weekly cost of living there.
You’ve always been quite sensible with food. You plan to cook yourself 16 meals each week. Eat in the Uni canteen for three meals a week and buy two takeaways. This comes to a grand weekly total of £54.50. You’ll also be eating up some time. All that munching will take 20 hours a week.
You’ve weighed up what you might spend on the basics of living: for example your toothpaste and shampoo, clothes, CDs, DVDS & downloads and a few squids for laundry and cleaning. The total you decide to spend each week on basics is £14.00
Studying isn’t just a question of spending time. It’ll also cost you money. Time at lectures and practical sessions takes up 12 hours of your time. You decide to spend another 10 hours on study time outside of lectures. You set aside a sensible amount for books, stationery, printing and photocopying. The total you decide to spend on printing at the library is £4.00. You’ll spend a total of 22 precious hours per week on your studies.
You want to find time to experience all that Uni can offer. You’ll be dropping by to see friends and watching telly for free. But what with mobile phone bills, plenty of visits to the student union, clubbing, watching films and working out at the gym you’re spending £26.50 on socialising each week. The activities you’ve chosen will take up 16 hours per week.
Total spend is £159 a week.
Your income from your loan and savings only adds up to £136.26 per week. You’ll be facing a shortfall of £22.74 per week. By the end of the first term that means that you’ll be overdrawn by around £285.00. With the £1000 interest free overdraft on offer to you from the bank, you’re relaxed about this budget. You can’t wait to get on with the term.
Wake me up before you go go
Aaagh! You’ve slept through your alarm and are late for your meeting with new tutor Doctor T. Never mind. You hit Snooze and go back to the Land of Nod.
T for terror
Yikes! Doctor T’s not best pleased with your lateness, and demands a reason. You tell him total utter porkies.
Blimey he bought that, but how much time have you bought? You don’t care as you’ve just bumped into someone you fancy outside his office. You get up the guts to speak.
You’re on the same course. But, oh no, here comes their current partner. You creep to the canteen.
You meet Ruth in the canteen. It’s her birthday and she’s buying the drinks. She offers you one but you refuse. Its time to hit the books if you’re going to stay on current form.
The library is having a sale, and you save twenty squid on textbooks. You wisely invest the difference in a new pair of jeans.
Mobile message. I just bought some second hand textbooks and they’ve got all the important stuff underlined already, result! Sarah.
You’ve also bought a funky new t-shirt to go with the jeans. Then you remember you’ve only got 10 mins to get to your first lecture. Crikey!
Better late than never
Doctor T’s in full swing and giving you evils, so you say sorry a million times.
On and on. The lecture is seriously dragging, you’re trying to stay awake and stay out of trouble.
As soon as it’s over you go home to catch your favourite programme. You put your feet up, relax with a well-earned drink, and thank your lucky stars it’s the weekend.
You go out to catch a gig. It’s still early when it ends, so you head off for the Friday night knees-up. You meet Kami on the dancefloor. You talk about badminton and her home city of Hong Kong while you boogie.
Finally the lights come on with the ever-subtle cry of ‘Everybody out!’ Darren suggests you share a cab, but you feel like walking and saving the fare.
Your walk leads you to the local kebab house. You dare to enter and spend £2.50 for the dubious pleasure. Mmmm, nice. Let’s hope you feel just as nice in the morning.
•Mobile message. Hey! Cool night! I’m Joe in case you’ve forgotten, studying architecture. You know Kami don’t you? I think she’s cute. Joe.
The weekend’s over
It’s Monday morning. Your workload is growing fast but you need feeding and head straight for the nearest greasy spoon.
Mmm, stuffed. With your tummy bulging and arteries hardening, you decide to sweat it out in the gym.
•Mobile message. We should cook together, or you should freeze what you don’t use. You’d save plenty money. Sarah.
The gym was a seriously bad idea. Kebabs, fry ups and press ups aren’t best friends. You feel utterly rank. You try to get down to some studying anyway.
Noooo! You realise you’ve forgotten about an urgent assignment. It’s all a bit much. You contact your Student Adviser and ask for help.
The Student Adviser suggests you ask for an extension and, next time, plan ahead and flag up problems a bit earlier. You go and talk to your lecturer.
•Mobile message. That Student Adviser’s pretty cool. He really helped me out with adjusting to Uni life in the UK. Kami.
Luck’s on your side and your lecturer’s given you an extension, so you decide to head home to relax.
When you get home, you realise your wallet is gone and you retrace your movements pronto. Better check out what the excess is on your insurance policy. You did take out an insurance policy, didn’t you?
No sign of your wallet and on the way back home you find Kami distraught and in tears! It’s a good night for crime. Her room’s been broken into and stereo nicked! Bad news all round.
Nice little earner: Macabre masks
You bump into a happy looking Sanchia on campus. She’s had a brainwave. As Halloween is just round the corner, why not make masks to make extra cash? Are you interested?
The nights are drawing in, and what better way to use those extra hours of darkness than make a load of scary masks and sell them for Halloween? You’ll be getting together with Sanchia so any profit, or loss, you make will be split 50/50. You decide to join Sanchia in the mask mission.
They’re a pretty lively lot at your Uni. A lot of people will be getting dressed up and even more might be up for at least sticking a mask on. Even so you decide to think carefully about how much to charge and how long you’ll have to spend making costumes.
Students don’t have much cash and often like making their own outfits. It probably won’t make you rich but if you keep your costs low you could still clear a reasonable amount. You might make a name for yourself and get given extra work for other fancy dress parties.
Okay. You’ve got work to do if this is going to happen. You decide that you and Sanchia can cope by yourselves and don’t need to get any other students involved. First off, you design your masks to be as scary as the terrible Doctor T. Then, you work out that materials cost one pound per mask. To add to your costs, twenty pounds buys you a stand in the Student Union where you’ll advertise and sell your masks. After a quick calculation you figure that you’ll need to sell ten masks just to break even.
Boys and ghouls!
You and Sanchia spend the day selling your masks. You’re well chuffed as you managed to sell 27 of them. This earned you £135. Minus £47 for costs leaves £88. That’s £44 each for you and Sanchia. Brilliant, you made a profit! Your formula for your small business was a success. Your bank balance is boosted and the experience you’ve gained will look great on your CV too.
Trick or treat?
It’s Halloween, and it’s time to let your hair down. A bunch of letters drops through your door. You check them out. There might be one for you.
There’s a couple of letters for you, and you think one of them is from the insurance company about your missing wallet. You hope you’re on your folks’ policy! You open it and risk ruining your day.
•Mobile message. After you lost your wallet and Kami got burgled, I checked out insurance, turns out I’m covered here on folks’ household policy. Ask yours to check their small print. Sarah.
•Mobile message. Didn’t have insurance so have asked my folks for some extra money! Will definitely get insurance. Learnt the hard way. Kami.
Bonzer! Your post is an invite to the hottest Halloween party on campus and a payout for your AWOL wallet. At least you’re flush again, but sadly none of your clothes are scary enough. You decide you’ll hire a costume and start ringing round the fancy dress shops.
Bad news. It’s going to cost £35 for a monster costume! With this mammoth price in mind, you make your own costume.
Sadly you’ve cut the eyeholes in the wrong part of your sheet and can’t see out. Sanchia offers to knock you up a vampire outfit from a bin liner. You agree and Sanchia works her magic. Sorted.
With fiends like these
The party’s heaving with zombies, witches and ghouls galore, when you spot the person you fancy and go for the jugular.
Aaagh! In your state, you’ve only gone and hit on Doctor T’s long term partner! Not good. You talk your way out of it. Luckily, you get away with it, ‘masking’ your embarrassment. You’ve had enough and do a runner.
All tomorrow’s parties
You’re run down and running out of money. Halloween and Guy Fawkes have played fireworks with your budget. Christmas is coming but you carry on regardless. Nothing interferes with your social life.
After taking it easy and giving up your excesses and bad habits for a week and a day, you’re ready for anything. So you go on another bender.
That last bender didn’t help at all. Now confined to your ‘cage’, too ill to study, you miss another deadline. You ask Doctor T for an extension but he’s in a bad mood and won’t give you any longer. You decide to sneakily put another student’s essay into your own words. Desperate times. Desperate measures.
A plague on plagiarism
Uh, oh! Doctor T’s on to your crafty ways and he’s fuming! You lie and say the essay was original, and tell T where to get off.
You’ve really gone too far this time. Doctor T’s blown his top, and it’s not pretty. You leave his office with more work than ever, and a face as red as a baboon’s bum.
•Mobile message. Plagiarism (copying other people’s work) is a really bad deal. You’ll get a low or no grade and could get thrown off your course, best to steer clear! Student Adviser.
Result! When you get home you check your account online and realise you’re better off than you thought. You hit town for clothes shopping.
•Mobile message. Alright millionaire? I put my extra cash in a savings account. High interest. Chat to the bank, they know more than me! Sanchia.
Oh no! You’ve completely blown your budget and have nothing left for your folks’ Xmas presents. Bah humbug!
End of term
One term down, two to go! End of term is the time to review how you’re getting on and re-budget for next term.
How’s it going?
You’ve had an excellent time this term. Let’s look at how you’re doing?
•Your savings are gone and you’ve racked up an overdraft slightly larger than you’d hoped of £299.62. You’ve heard from other students who’ve done some part-time work and think that this could work for you too next term.
•Your academic performance is good with a low 2.1. You’ve knuckled down and it’s beginning to show in your results. Don’t slacken off now. Things are looking good.
•Your social life is blazing. Life’s good. You know lots of people and are out more than you’re in.
•Your health is still average, which is better than nothing. Exercise happens once or twice a week when you can fit it in – no shame in that.
•You’re quids in from the nice little earner with Sanchia.