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Student story

Tom Leslie

20 July 2023

"The feeling that accompanies studying at a university is so incredible..."


Studying towards a Bachelor of Science in Philosophy and Psychology


What was it that brought you down from Tauranga to UC?

The main reason was that I loved the campus. It was somewhere I could see myself studying a subject I enjoyed. The feeling that accompanies studying at a university is so incredible. It makes my study feel like it is meaningful.

Why did you choose your degree subjects?

I had two main drivers for wanting to study Psychology and Philosophy; the first was a deep curiosity about how people work, and the second was to enable my future self. I would like to go onto postgraduate study and eventually become a clinical psychologist. 

The thing I like most about my study is the amount of overlap it has with other subjects. Everything can be traced back to what I am studying and I can see little dynamics I couldn’t before.

How do you keep on top of that?

Preparation is key. For example, knowing when you have assignments due, getting your readings done before lectures, writing out the bulk of your notes. It doesn’t really matter how you do it, but if you are on top of things it makes your life way less stressful and helps your grades a ton. 

The biggest challenge for me has been balancing study, socialising, and personal time. I think that unless you have a balance, it becomes hard to do any of them at all. The thing that has helped me overcome this issue is planning. Knowing that you have some time to yourself or with friends after study helps keep your morale high and the wheels rolling.

Has living in University Hall helped you with this as well?

I chose to stay in the halls in order to get to know a bunch of people in the same situation as I am; not really knowing anyone, but keen to meet new people.

I cannot understate the benefits that have come from having a group you can come back to every day. The friends that you meet and the groups you join will make every day so much more enjoyable. I spend most of my time playing Ultimate Frisbee or other sports – with the amount of clubs around I’m honestly spoilt for choice.

So what has been a highlight from socialising at the halls?

My highlights seem to all come back to the common rooms, talking to people. Whether it’s a convo over a game of pool, or playing piano with each other. 

It’s also really nice having the RA’s around since they’re always willing to talk and answer questions.

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