Five things anyone studying in Australia can relate to

October 21, 2015
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As far as stereotyping goes, students tend to cop a lot of flak. We’re constantly being deemed as lazy, unhealthy, disorganised and selfish alcoholics who live out of our parents’ bank accounts. While this may certainly ring true for a small proportion of the student population, it’s a generalisation that’s unfairly imparted all too often.

Nonetheless, it is important to recognise that there are aspects of student life that are certainly a communal experience. These home truths create true-to-life stereotypes that are appreciated and acknowledged by almost every Australian uni-goer.

The beach is a great place to study (not)

As temperatures soar towards the mid-30s, popular Aussie beaches are packed to maximum capacity in an uncomfortable bumper-to-bumper towel-jam. And yep, we’re all too easily lured away from the stinking classrooms to the blissful, breezy ocean.

While we technically might be skipping class for a cheeky frolic in the sand, with a few textbooks stashed in the beach bag and honest intentions to have a solid “beach study sesh”, we surely are the most goddam responsible beach-goers around.

Unfortunately, the reality is that beachside studying is as impractical as it sounds, with wind, flying water droplets and endless distractions making textbook concentration near impossible. But hey, it’s the thought that counts!

(Kudos to the few ultra-responsible students who hit the surf early and begrudgingly troop into class sandy, sunburnt and sporting the hottest scent of summer: eau-de-sunscreen. Now that’s dedication.)

Goon is the liquid of the gods

Despite the apparent assumption by the ‘ageing generations’ that we students enjoy throwing around our dollars with reckless abandon, I really beg to differ. I mean, it seems rather naïve (read: downright stupid) of them to believe that we absolutely adore drinking goon more than any other beverage in the world.

Of course goon isn’t my preferred beverage. If it weren’t for my economically sound and conscientious decision-making, I’d be drinking up Laurent-Perrier like a cactus in the desert, thank you very much.

No, goon has achieved its status amongst students as the liquid of the gods because it puts you in a giggling, drunken tizz after a few gulps, and costs around 30 cents per standard drink. Now that, Granny, is what I call a demonstration of true economic responsibility!

The ‘tactical’ timetable

An 8:30 class on a Thursday or Friday morning is out of the question. This point is absolutely, 100 per cent non-negotiable. In fact, master timetablers will ensure that Fridays remain entirely commitment-free throughout their degree.

Friday lectures are like the friends you wave at out of politeness as you pass them on the street, but with whom you’d never consider engaging in any sort of verbal interaction. Just smile and wave, boys, smile and wave. And then roll over and go back to sleep.

What dress code?

Not in the mood to wear shoes today? No worries, mate.

Despite popular belief, uni life is totally chill, man. Some students are so laidback and at one with the world around them that they merely regard shoes as being superfluous instruments that disconnect you from the ethereal forces of the Earth. Or something.

So dress it up, dress it down – the clothing choice that floats your boat will almost certainly be accepted amongst the wacky and diverse cultures of ‘Strayan unis.

Here’s hoping you won the meat raffle

The local meat raffle dictates the menu for the upcoming two weeks in many student households. While this can be an extremely economical approach to grocery shopping, it can also result in some fairly diverse dietary trends.

Depending on your luck, you can go to one extreme or the other: you and your housemates will either all have dangerously high cholesterol levels, or you’ll all be lethargically stuck in bed due to severe iron deficiency.

Nonetheless, the meat raffle tends to be a fairly optimistic gamble, with multiple trays usually on offer and the thrill of the draw making it a totally worthwhile pursuit.

May the odds be ever in your flavour.

Hannah Hughes

Hannah is passionate about lime milkshakes. She also enjoys befriending ducks at the University of Wollongong, where she studies law and journalism.

Image: Ben Seidelman, Flickr Creative Commons license