Some loyal readers will recognize this entry as a repeat from the last seven years. Each year it gets a good response, and kudos from my readers, and so as before I must appease my loyal followers...

To all the students starting University, enjoy this time of your life. Long ago when I started, a prof told me that this is the start of your real education. Now you get to choose your own courses and your own field of study. It is entirely up to you to decide what to do with this chance.

I know from my own experience that the first days of University can be terrifying and exciting at the same time. But remember, it is a community not just a school. Other students are in the same position, and the shared experiences you have with them can lead to life-long friendships. Remember that there are always older students and grad students who are willing and eager to help you out. There are tutors available for everything, and your instructors want to help you.

If you don't understand something in class, ask a question. You might think that you look foolish, but in truth most of your classmates will be thinking 'I am glad someone else asked instead of me!'. Go to tutorial sessions that the university offers. Go to the prof's office hours to discuss the work. Read every comment that the Teaching Aids make on your papers- many times they are able to explain things in a few notes that the instructor can't in an hour lecture! (And yes I am just saying that because I was a TA for several courses :D )

For many of you this new life is far greater than just attending lectures and doing homework. Many of you will be living on your own for the first time. Universities also offer a lot of distractions - with clubs and associations for every interest. Enjoy this new freedom, but remember to not let them interfere with your studies.

So begin your 'real' education, and enjoy this time in your life. It only happens once, and it can be a wonderful experience.