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A day in the life of a full-time Glasgow student balancing studies, working, and FOMO

It can be hard balancing a healthy social life, work and studies. Don’t worry you aren’t alone.


Being a full-time uni student and having to work part-time doesn’t make for an easy time. But a lot of us have to do it. I am a second year undergraduate English literature and history of art student at the University of Glasgow and this is what a day in my life at uni consists of.

Waking up

My day usually begins with waking up at around eight in the morning, I wake up to my alarm which haunts my dreams and I take my pill. Luckily none of my classes begin until ten so I’m able to mope around and take my time, making my bed, showering and trying to figure out an outfit.

I tend to dress as comfy as possible or like on this day dressing in my work clothes and throwing a jumper over the top. Trust me comfort over fashion some days is the only way to go.

Breakfast

After showering and getting ready, I would usually have a bowl of Cheerios, and maybe some apple slices too. But on this occasion, I met a friend for a coffee and grabbed a scone. Trust me, Kember and Jones on Bryes Road have the best scones and they are gigantic! Plus they are a cafe on the more affordable side!

Going to cafes either to study or just chat with friends is a key way for me to balance my social life, it means two things can be done at once, studying and catching up. Often uni is stressful and deadlines are close together midterm, and sometimes it helps to have some time away from the campus or my flat and have a tea and scone.

Lectures and seminars

After my delicious breakfast, I had a lecture on English literature and a seminar on the history of art. As my lectures are coming to an end both my seminar and lecture were mainly about exams, essays, formatting and topics which may appear. I try to take as many notes as possible, even if I don’t think they will be substantial, this is just so I can edit them later.

We also had a reading for the art seminar and it was one of the more interesting texts we’ve had. It was on the topic of the paintings which were found within a German flat and how they had been taken by officials and that they were unsure on how to proceed with selling them or giving them back.

We also had a reading for the art seminar and it was one of the more interesting texts we’ve had. It was on the topic of the paintings which were found within a German flat and how they had been taken by officials and that they were unsure on how to proceed with selling them or giving them back.

I usually work from 1:30pm until 10pm, it sounds like a long shift and sometimes it is but I tend to find that longer shifts go by faster. I’m lucky not to work weekends, but I need to be organised when it comes to writing essays, revising exams and meeting friends. Working until 10pm also means I can catch the subway home before it closes and get home in a reasonable time.

Like many other full-time students, I do get SAAS but that usually goes to my rent and bills, food shopping and transport. So having a part-time job allows me to gain an income which doesn’t need to go towards bills and can be saved.

I’ve been working since I was 16 so it is something I’ve learned to plan around in terms of meeting friends. However, when moving to uni, I wanted to make strong social connections and not be restricted by my job. For the first month or so I was able to do this and I’m grateful for my friends but it was unrealistic for me to go through all of the uni without working.

Heading home

After finishing my shift, I jump on the subway and usually listen to a podcast episode to get myself more relaxed and chilled out. It’s been so cold recently so I always make sure to be wrapped up and bring a scarf, gloves and hat with me at all times.

I am not built for the cold weather, trust me. As the days get longer I find myself getting less motivated and just wanting to lay in bed, I think it’s clear to see I am a summer person.

By the time I usually get back to my flat, it is around 10:30pm which means I just get sorted, wash my face, get into pj’s get into bed and get ready to repeat a similar day tomorrow.

Fomo

Fomo is something which I have experienced a lot. With working and studies, I had to miss out on a lot of events and I still do. I don’t think I’ve been able to attend a club social yet due to always working on the days they are planned. It can suck and for a while made me feel like I was missing out on everything I was supposed to experience during uni.

Of course, there are the weekends, but a lot of students are only able to work the weekends. So making plans can be super difficult and stressful. Over time, it has been easier to see friends, make it to events, and plan around work. I still experience FOMO often but I try to remind myself that it won’t last forever and eventually I’ll be able to go to events without worrying about studies.

It is worth it?

Being a full-time uni student and working part-time can be challenging. There is often a feeling of missing out because we aren’t in a position to make plans all the time and only worry about essays. Just like many other students, it can be stressful to have such a full schedule to balance relationships, uni, and sometimes even health.

But it does get easier with time, it allowed for me to get better at organising, and planning. Although it can be tough, it is also rewarding. You’ll meet other people in your position who can offer support and who understand what you are dealing with. As well as gaining new skills from the job you are working and overall having a strong work ethic that transfers to your studies.

I know it can be tough to be in this position and I am here along with you as much as I’ve wished I didn’t have to organise and plan so much I am grateful to have gained work experience, organising skills, and great friendships. I have made amazing memories and friendships and I wouldn’t trade it for the world.

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