By Kathleen Chen, Global Politics Postgraduate (Masters)
It’s kind of amazing how time flies! In a blink of an eye, term one ended and Christmas vacation came around. It feels pretty amazing and kind of unbelievable. Seems like it was just yesterday that I was getting into the groove of school! However, I was also really glad that it was finally Christmas time.
Since the second term is starting, I decided to put together a short little ‘To-do List’ of things in John’s based on mine and other Johnians’ opinion to help you get a fresh kick-start into college for the new year and term!
1: Have a random catch-up with friends in one of the little meeting rooms around college.
Instead of going out to town to catch-up with friends, why not use one of the little meeting rooms in and around college? It’s pretty relaxing getting cosy on the sofas with tea and some snacks! Additionally, the welfare room is open every day from 7-8pm with free tea and snacks if you need a quick getaway!
2: Exercise at the college’s gym.
Just recently renovated, the college gym is quite small, but still has enough equipment to satisfy most of your exercise needs. Most importantly, it stops you from giving yourself the excuse of not exercising because it is too cold or rainy to step outside since it is right in college grounds.
3: Have a meal with people you’ve never spoken to before.
It may sound daunting to some, but it really isn’t as difficult as it sounds! As any Johnian knows, we’re known for being the friendliest college around, so there’s really nothing to be afraid of. You never know if the person next to you is just waiting to share the most fantastic joke or story with someone. You may even hit it off and make a new friend!
4: Collect enough college potato shots to complete a “potato jigsaw”.
When I first came to college, I thought it was pretty amazing to realise that there were more than 3 different ways you could actually cook potatoes. That’s when I decided to start documenting the different kinds of potatoes that college serves up, to complete a little photo ‘potato jigsaw’ of sorts, if you will. Why not make mealtime more fun, am I right?
5: Treat yourself to a bowl of “Luxury Noodles”
I’m sure anybody who’s stayed in college can relate to oversleeping and missing college breakfast, or feeling hungry in the dead of night mid-way pulling an all-nighter. All this just means that it’s the time to treat yourself to a bowl of “super noodles” (i.e. instant noodles). Cook up some noodles, and throw in an egg, vegetables, prawns, cheese, or whatever ingredients float your boat! The hot soup really does it for me especially on a cold winters day.
6: Join Formal Dinners
The formal dinners in John’s are definitely one thing you should not miss. Not only is the food delicious, it also gives you the chance to meet new people and catch-up with friends without the distraction of phones. Wearing the gown to dinner just makes everything so much more magical as well.
7: Self-study in the College Library
Take it from me – it’s a really good feeling being able to study in the library with warm lighting. Also, if you choose the seat between bookshelves, it just makes studying so much more motivating because you are literally being surrounded by knowledge.
8: Take a Selfie in the College Garden.
I just want to say that the pavilion in the garden is just too cute to miss. There are many good spots for photos showing the beauty of St John’s, so why not take some for memories?
9: Explore St John’s
I think we can all agree that it can be pretty tricky finding your way around college sometimes (or maybe it’s just me…). Why not turn a frustrating activity into an exciting game with friends? Grab a couple pals and explore the college! Who knows, you might find some secret rooms or a staircase that leads to nowhere…
10: Attend College Activities
We’re so fortunate that throughout the term, there are just always a range of activities being offered to us to enjoy! From academic support to events solely just for fun, it is a really good way in keeping engaged with college life whichever year you are, or whether or not you live in or out of college.
There are just so many more things to do in St John’s that I’m still trying to explore as I go along with my college life and I’m very excited to continue doing so! Hopefully you feel the same as well.
Hope you’ve had a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year, and hope this helps you have a great start to the new school term!