By Emily Wei, Lifestyle Columnist
With September starting, it is finally time to bid goodbye to yet another summer. If you’re a student like me, I’m sure the upcoming school year has been on the back of your mind since summer started. Where your classes are, who you’ll make friends with, and what supplies to get are just a few thoughts that might have been circling your brain recently. There’s no need to make the start of the school year any harder, especially for those of you beginning, or already in, post-secondary studies. Th is is why I’ll be writing about some back to school necessities and tips to make the transition from summer break to study days as smooth as possible!
Beginning with those of you moving out for the first time, let’s discuss footwear. In my opinion there are five shoes I would not live without in university. Shower shoes might seem silly at first but communal bathrooms are perfect hosts for bacteria and fungus. Sneakers and slippers will give you the comfort you need (believe me, you will want as much comfort as you can get). Boots such as Blundstones will be a lifesaver during the colder/ rainier months, and you never know when you might be invited somewhere fancy, so be sure to pack a pair of dress shoes! Moving on from footwear to first aid; please be sure to have a first aid kit! Despite living at home, I’ve used my fi rst aid kit countless times throughout my first year of university. Stock up with bandaids (all sizes, big and small), Tylenol, polysporin, Q-tips, alcohol swabs, cold medicine (believe me, you will need lots of this), and a thermometer! Furthermore, reusable gadgets will become your best friend. A few “must-haves” include; reusable shopping/grocery bags, water bottles, thermos, cutlery, straws, lunch bag, cleaning cloths, and ice pack. Not only will these save you money, but you’ll fi nd that having these on hand all the time will be extremely convenient. Lastly, some miscellaneous items to add include; a daily planner, digital camera, mini sewing kit, and flashlight!
Now that we’ve discussed the basic things to bring, let’s talk about things to do! Whether your goal is to be a social butterfly and make as many friends as you can, or just make a few, my recommendation is to put yourself out there as much as you’re comfortable with, and just be yourself! Speaking as someone who is not a natural extrovert (sometimes quite the opposite actually), I found that making friends really isn’t as easy as it seems and there’s no secret to finding them. If you’re living in residence or on campus in general, it is much easier to make new friends, but for those of you not living on campus, don’t be discouraged! An easy way to meet new people is to join a society/club. Most universities are home to a plethora of different societies so you’re bound to fi nd one you’re compatible with. Of course, it’s also important to stay safe if you’re in a new environment so here’s a few things to keep in mind… Lock your windows and doors when needed (some people will leave them unlocked during the first few weeks to make new friends so have fun but stay safe!). Also, make sure to familiarize yourself with campus security services such as emergency call stations. An oldie but goody rule is to travel in groups when you can and if you can’t, try to let someone know where you’re going or have your phone location on! Th e last tip for today will be to get a mini keychain alarm. You can fi nd these at most grocery/electronic stores and, even if you don’t end up using it, it’s always nice to have as an extra layer of security!
That’s just about it for this month but I hope you all have a good start to the beginning of fall and had a memorable summertime!