Year 1, Semester 1

These are just 10 things that I’ve learnt in Year 1, Semester 1 in university:
  1. There is always time to do things, it is just up to you to plan your time properly. Every single minute of the day must be treasured and used to the max.
  2. Quality is better than quantity. Be it in terms of revision hours, sleep hours or even time spent socialising.
  3. 20 Seconds of courage. We need to always be brave for just a mere 20 seconds and step out of our comfort zone. We need to be brave to try new things and talk to new people.
  4. Ask, ask, ask. If you do not know something, ask. Don’t be shy because everyone is there learning too. You might actually do them a favour by asking. Also, ask your professors and TAs. Make use of them.
  5. It is important to make friends. The more friendships you make, the easier your life is in university. The more options that you open yourself up to.
  6. There’s always lessons to learn from everyone. Each and everyone in university has at least 18 years of life experience. Tap on that.
  7. Sometimes, we need to learn to stop fighting a futile battle. Sometimes, you just couldn’t get your head around certain modules or what the module is asking from you. Just recognise that sometimes we need to put our weapons down and re-strategise.
  8. Learn to accept that sometimes, hard work does not pay off. There’s always someone better than you or you’re just not good at it. Disappointment can creep in when you get a bad result. Learn to stand up again, take a breather and move on quickly.
  9. Make mistakes. That’s the only way to learn.
  10. You are never alone. There’s always someone out there experiencing the same problem you are.

 

Advertisements

Chasing an Education

Jobs are harder to find,

Degrees are rapidly decreasing in value,

Graduates struggle to make ends meet.

So, is there any purpose in pursuing an education?

Well, I believe that it truly depends.

In my case, I pursue an education because I am fascinated in the subject. I am curious about learning the inner workings of Biology and reaching a level whereby I am able to truly understand the complexities of Life.

I did not enrol into a university so that I can get a job in the future but because of the deep interest I have in the subject and I think that that should be the reason why we pursue an education.

At the end of the day, I believe that our intention matters because ultimately, you have to weigh the pros and the cons of getting an education. Is it worth it to spend thousands of dollars on an education that does not promise you a stable career after or would you rather spend that money to build something for yourself?

Sometimes, we make a decision to enter university because it seemed to be the right path to take but have we ever pondered if it is truly beneficial for us in the first place?

Stop letting that herd mentality affect you but find and truly understand the reason you’re chasing an education.

Degrees aren’t everything.

Getting S*** back together

As excited I am for school to begin, I’m dreading it too.

I’m dreading the amount of work that needs to be done. Gone were the days that I can wake up whenever I want, sleep whenever I want, do whatever I want or just laze around all day.

Well, I guess, they’re part of the package of going back to school.

However, what I’m really dreading or cursing at is getting everything back together. Two years of National Service really tears you down, your routines changed from the last time you were in school, your body adjusted to a different kind of clock and your mind becomes lazy and less sharp.

What I need to do now is to:

  1. Find a new routine
  2. Set a solid timetable and periods that I will use for studying
  3. Stop habits like morning Youtube subscription sessions
  4. Exercising regularly
  5. Sleep on time
  6. Get my brain working again

Time to get prepared!

 

A New Chapter

In a few weeks (about two), a new chapter in my life will unfold. I will start my university education at the National University of Singapore. I will be majoring in the Life Sciences.

For 20 years of my life, I had worked hard for this, I had studied hard for this and now I am finally here. I thank Allah for everything that has ever happened that had helped me achieve this feat.

Enrolling into a university has always been a destination that my parents had set for me and a destination that I had set for myself. All the examinations, countless hours of studying and the sleepless nights throughout my 20 years of life was for this.

I guess, I haven’t really had the time to appreciate this moment, the success that I have finally achieved. It is a success that can never be fulfilled without the help of family, friends, teachers and Allah.

University is not going to be easy, that I know. It is going to be a tough 4 years but I know that I can survive through this like I always have. I believe that it is going to be an exciting 4 years full of memories, cherished moments and long-lasting friendships and as I had worked hard to reach where I am now, I hope to treasure every single moment.

 

A Camp

Apologies, I am currently attending a Life Science Camp in my school, National University of Singapore. 

So far, the events have been wonderful and fun. I’m glad that I have met wonderful people with wonderful personalities and I cannot wait for school to officially begin. 

University struck me as complex and requires much independence on the part of the student and it is that flexibility and freedom that I cannot wait to experience. To finally be in charge of your owm education puts more accountability on me and thus, more driven to work hard for my future. 

Well, this post will be considered as the post for yesterday and I will post another later in the evening. 🙂

Cheers all. 

The Practical Skills

It is unfortunate that the new generation of teenagers and young adults seemed to lack the practical skills. Though I believe that it is unfair to solely put the blame on them. I am from this group of people, a young adult being trained and schooled in an education system that praises the ones who could calculate, the ones who could understand the complex maths, the ones who could follow and ace in their concrete tests.

Don’t get me wrong, I am not the one who is ranked last in class, nor am I the one who fails every single examination, always the one trailing behind the rest. I am a person who aced his examinations, did well enough to enter university (National University of Singapore this August) and enjoyed school. However, I came to realise we lacked something.

I believe that there is more to than just the maths and the sciences, and there is more to than just the arts that we are studying in school. There is a whole world of creativity and practical skills that our education systems around the world seemed to lack.

And some of us are taking a stand, questioning and petitioning for change. However, that can only go so far.

Instead of waiting and doing what we can for change, we need to take charge of our own learning, pick up the practical skills that we want to learn, skills that are investments: cooking, building, creating, to name a few.

We need to be conscious about what we are learning and not just go with the flow.

In Asian societies, we are always chasing the ‘paper’. Parents are obsessed with their children to get degrees and masters and even PhDs, believing that it will help them to find a good job and build a family in the future. They are not wrong because that is what society uses to differentiate the ‘good’ from the ‘bad’. However, we need to recognise that there is a whole other group of people who are talented and could be successful but are not because they do not own the ‘paper’, they are the creators, the artists, the writers and the street-smarts.

Those are the people with the practical skills that our societies sorely lacked and those are the people that needs to be encouraged and supported if we do not want our society to only be filled by ‘textbook-smart’ people.

So I say, learn the practical skills any way you can because, in a world where an increasing number of people are becoming only ‘textbook-smart’, the practical skills you have will be an asset.