26 February 2018

What to expect at orientation

How can I structure my degree? What if I get lost on campus? Will I find out how to navigate the University website? Josh Rizk shares tips, tricks and what you can expect during orientation at the Business School.

A lot of information
With information about the Business School, society, subjects, how to outline your degree, and how to navigate the Unviersity website - it will all probably seem a bit too much. Remember that everyone is in the same situation. It’s also normal to get a fair bit wrong in the admin process, and you will have a couple of weeks to talk to the Student Centre to figure it all out.

As I’m sure you found out during the 3-month break between HSC exams and uni, you now have a lot more time to explore whatever you like. At the Business School, you have societies for investing, startups, finance, marketing, and just about everything you could ever want. There’s also societies outside business, such as the film society, that you can explore. Be sure to check it all out and sign up to a couple you're interested in.

I don’t think there is a student on campus who hasn’t gotten lost in USYD’s labyrinth. Be sure to check out the buildings of where your classes are. I’d also suggest doing this because the campus is so big that its often quite difficult to go from one side of the campus to another in the 10-minute break between classes, so you might need to adjust your timetable. There’s also an app called ‘lost on campus’ that is quite helpful!

New ways of thinking
No longer are you encouraged to memorise syllabus dot points or rote-learning an essay, and spit it out verbatim in an exam. Your courses focus significantly more on critical thinking, new ideas and your level of analysis as opposed to memorisation. I found it helpful reading the Australian Financial Review and The Economist, as it allows you to apply what you learn in uni to real world situations or examples.

New environments
Orientation is really just familiarising yourself with what you are about to embark on, so keep an open mind and make the most of it. You’ll learn about majors, meet new people and be exposed to diverse range of opinions perhaps your high-school didn’t offer. Talk to everyone, keep an open mind, and enjoy.

By Josh Rizk, student and peer mentor at the University of Sydney Business School

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