Returning home after a year at university will do one of two things, it will either make you appreciate the friends and family you have left behind, or you will take one look at your life pre-university and spend the summer counting down the days until September. Unfortunately, university has a funny habit of dividing friendship groups. You may be closer than Neil, Simon, Jay, and Will but six months apart and different life plans can separate even the closest of friends. You have been warned, if you’re returning home soon after the best year of your life, look out for these five friends you may be unfortunate enough to run into…
The ‘I’m doing so well’ friend
This friend has probably chosen a path very similar to yours; they worked hard at college and are reaping the rewards by partying and studying for a degree that will enhance their future life. You know this and so do they although this friend feels the need to boast about every single detail of the past six months. You will both have had very similar experiences; a brilliant freshers week, great nights out, made friends by joining different societies and produced work to be proud of. However this friend will assure you, they have done it all a little better than you did. Just sit back and let them boast if they feel they need to prove themselves let them.
The one who took a gap year
Here’s another friend who will try and prove they had a better year than you. This person missed out on university the first time round (whether by choice or accident) and spent the last six months travelling in a bid to ‘discover’ themselves. Although a gap year can be amazing, it’s also not for everyone, but some good thought could be beneficial. In all honesty, this friend probably does have a lot of interesting stories to tell, but so do you so don’t take a backseat and let them take the spotlight. Just because you weren’t hiking across America, building houses in Africa or making strange high-pitched noises around a campfire wearing body paint, it doesn’t mean you had any less fun. Let them have their time but tell some of the funny stories you have too. If you want to remain close friends during university, you need to respect the different choices everyone makes.
The one who works full time
This person either dropped out half way through college or simply decided not to pursue higher education. This person now works full time and it’s almost impossible to see them during the week. You will find you may not have as much in common as you used to; your life is now about assignments and mid-week student nights, and their life is now working 9 ‘til 5 and living for the weekend. They’ll probably be of the opinion that university is pointless and will be more than happy to voice their reasoning’s to you. All you have to do is nod and respect their opinion because you are safe in the knowledge that a degree sets you apart from so many others who aren’t able to achieve it. This doesn’t mean when you go back to uni you can’t work and have an part-time job, and work, managing working and studying is a very special skill.
The one you used to be close to
This person was your best friend at college. When you first moved to university, you spoke every day via Skype and they even came down for a few nights during fresher’s week. However as the year progressed, you fell out of contact and that twang of jealousy you felt when they were tagged having fun without you soon diminished. If you are truly close, meeting again during the summer will feel like nothing has changed. However, if they are of the bitter ex-variety then we wish you good luck!
The one who missed out
After failing to get into their university of choice last year, this person has spent the entire year gaining work experience and perfecting their personal statement in preparation for the following academic year. They are in a constant state of obsession, proofreading their statement, actually reading the books they have referenced and their new favourite hobby is to research the university they are desperate to go to. Our advice is to simply avoid this friend; they are on a mission and will not let anything stand between them and university. Admire their determination, but do it from a safe distance.
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