UC stories

What failures or setbacks have you experienced? What has made a positive difference for you in how you think about success and failure? What advice would you give to your "first year self"?

If you'd like to share, we'd love to hear your stories and thoughts. By taking part in an open conversation about these questions, you can help make a great positive difference for others. It may require some bravery, but anything you submit will only be published anonymously (unless you specifically request otherwise).

Share your story here


In my second year, I got a D on a 30% test, two weeks into the 2nd term. This meant I had to do a ton of work and learn in different ways to get back on track with passing. I had to put aside my differences with my lecturer, ask how I would be able to pass, join group study sessions, and despite not really wanting to, do the readings. It was hard work. Getting a D chopped me down a lot – first in family when you're the youngest tends to create a lot of self-expectation, which is hard to overcome because you're supposed to be “the smart one” and it starts to tie up with identity. Even though I hated that term so much, I did okay. I got a B- overall which I wouldn't have achieved if I didn't seek advice, make a plan, and stick to it.

Celebrate your successes, no matter how big or small and try not to compare yourself to others. Someone else's success is not your failure.

... I wish I was able to talk and socialise more with these people as I was quite scared to talk with them and that is because I was always concerned about what other people think about me during my first and second year.

Find ways to improve instead of stressing about the small stuff.

Advice to my first year self: Not to be so hard on myself.

University is hard and it requires a lot of work, but the rewards are worth it. Don't let a 'bad' grade get you down, work out where you went wrong and what you can do better next time, just keep going!

Get mentors and experienced people that you can turn to for uni help. Uni is hard to do alone!

Just speak even though its broken English, that's how you improve your english.

Your health is important! Sometimes it needs to take priority even over study!

You can do this, distractions are inevitable but focus is choice. Caffeine can only get you so far and all nighters are ok just not for every assignment (stay on top of the work, even just an hour or so a day). You got this one step at a time.