Monday, 6 October 2014


I'm not speaking about the book by William Bridges or a design textbook.

It's September and at the beginning of the month, universities were welcoming a whole new group of frosh and as I am now living in the city in which I attended university, I was getting nostalgic. Then I was listening to the radio and they were speaking about the transition to university. First year students in Nova Scotia were given a pamphlet called Transitions. It is being used as a how-to guide of going from high school to university.

I'd been thinking about that transition when I came across a couple of television programs (on Netflix), called Freaks and Geeks and Undeclared. If you haven't seen either, please allow me to explain why these shows are a must-watch, particularly at this time of year.

Freaks and Geeks follows the story of a brother/sister combo of Lindsay (Linda Cardellini) and Sam Weir (John Francis Daley) and their adventures through high school. At first I was a little put off by the predictable story lines and high school cliches but I stuck it out because (I forgot to mention) James Franco, Seth Rogen, and Jason Segel also play leading roles. I continued watching and discovered that the show was set up like an after school special; however, I quickly discovered there are no morals pushed on the audience at the end of each episode. The show really doesn't have a moral compass at all; the characters make mistakes and regardless of their mistakes or how hard they try to learn from them, no lessons are learned in the end.

Undeclared is the story of Steven Karp's (Jay Baruchel) first year of university. Steven is an extremely average student facing his first year of college. He is put in common situations that most first year students encounter: making new friends, living away from home, working towards tuition payments, family troubles, parties, etc. Compared to my experiences as a first year university student and working as a university residence coordinator, Undeclared is one of the best depictions of university life I've seen. Oh, and Seth Rogen and Jason Segel are both on this show as well.

So where was I going with this?

I guess the transition from high school to university is hard, and if it isn't, then you are lucky (or probably still live at home). A transition booklet would not be complete without the mention of these great shows so you probably should watch them. And lets face it, you're not actually studying in first year anyway; go ahead and Netflix binge!

If you are like me and have already graduated from both high school and university, these are great nostalgia shows. You should probably watch.

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