#1 You are completely surrounded by a variety of likeminded people who have chosen to be in higher education. No more are you forced to sit through painstaking hours of classes partnered with someone who'd rather spend the hour defacing the textbook than helping you create a detailed model of the Golgi apparatus. There are plenty intelligent conversations to be had that can lead into great friendships.
#2 You are never more than a few minutes’ walk from a bar, bacon butty or steaming cup of coffee. It’s a fact.
#3 If you're like me and are moving from a relatively small town into a city for the first time in your life, exploring is mandatory. Before moving to university there were a couple of restaurants I'd never set foot into and I couldn’t remember the last time I’ve visited a museum or went into a shopping centre that had more than three shops. University can open your eyes to many things, but discovering new places is one of my favourite. Moreover, by moving into some sort of student accommodation you will probably live under your “own roof” for the first time – which is also a great experience!
#4 You are not only expected to go out and have fun, wake up past midday and have the local takeaway on speed dial - it's encouraged.
#6 There’s a society for absolutely everything. From Come Dine with Me to Pirates and DJ-ing to Arts and Crafts, the societies fair has it all. None of these taking your fancy? Maybe you’re more of a Quidditch man. University has more extracurricular activities that I’ve ever seen in one place, and it certainly beats the lunchtime chess club. It’s the perfect time to pick up a new hobby.
#7 The fact that you can literally turn up to a lecture in your pyjamas and no one bats an eyelid. During my second year I did in fact turn up to one of my lectures in my pyjamas in order to raise money for Children in Need but, but this is especially helpful if you hate getting up on a morning and happen to live on campus.
#8 At university the pace of learning is governed by you. This means that you can prepare weeks in advance or wait until after the lecture to read the relevant material. You can tailor your experience to your particular learning style, whether you learn best by recording lectures or drawing mind maps in class, it’s entirely up to you. Sitting in a lecture is also a completely different atmosphere than sitting in a classroom, it’s a great relaxed working atmosphere that, with the right lecturer, is a very engaging experience.
#9 Say goodbye to the 9-4 and hello to ten or so hours a week. On one hand, you get to set your own work schedule which is fantastic if you're a night owl like me. On the other, does the latest video game expansion pack or a two thousand word essay on ethics sound more interesting to you?
#10 Exams! Admittedly the blasted things do still exist but when you're as stressed out and sleep deprived as the average student you begin to count your blessings. Like the fact that you don't have to stay for the full exam and sit there wondering just how many words people can really be writing about Sigmund Freud? Or, the fact that you can take in a bottle of soft drink for when the inevitable tummy rumbling beings.