Preparing for uni? Watch ‘Anne With An E’


Anne With An E is a television series that was first aired in 2017, based on the book Anne of Green Gables. The show strives to highlight the power of hard work and resilience in a comedic yet touching manner. Anne Shirley-Cuthbert, an orphan who was frequently bullied by her peers, is the series’ protagonist. She teaches the importance of devotion to one’s craft, which in her case is schoolwork and creative writing.

Anne not only manages to become top of her class through sheer dedication to her studies, but is also passionate about the work she does. This is vital to note in the context of academic life. The most pivotal element of studying that will lead to success is devotion, whether this arises from extra reading, reviewing lecture notes or starting that over- whelming essay a little sooner!

However, passion is just as important. Often when studying your chosen subject daily, it is easy for the passion that was once there to dwindle. By reading in your area of interest, simply for pleasure, or by watching a documentary about your subject, it’ll become clear once again what you once loved about your studies. For Anne in Anne With An E, her passion is perpetuated through the creation of stories. She even goes as far as setting up a creative writing group with her friends to do so.

Although work is a key element of university life, the sense of identity and community that forms during one’s time at university is also crucial. Anne With An E’s Muriel Stacy is the newcomer (and Anne’s teacher) in the very tight knit town of Avonlea. She is beloved by many of her peers for her idiosyncrasy and individuality. However, it was not always this way – she was first disliked by pupils and parents alike for her bold clothing and her progressive values. These very qualms the town held about her are eventually perceived as her best traits.

Starting university can involve finding a sense of community by being around likeminded individuals

University is about forming an identity, with- out a care for what others may think. It is about being courageous and distinctive. And it is also about recognising barriers and moving past them effectively. Starting university can involve finding a sense of community by being around likeminded individuals. Although Muriel Stacy at first struggles to find those who share her feminist values and desires for change in the patriarchal system, she soon gathers several acquaintances who support her life goals, including Anne herself. University is a vital time to do this: to find compatible friends who will spur you on to pursue what you are most passionate about. Like Anne and Muriel’s friendship, which stretches across generations, these friends may be those you least expect to find yourself compatible with.

Part of university is the balance we strike between every complex element of life

Indeed, despite any adversities, these overall goals can still be achieved. In Anne With An E, the death of Gilbert Blythe’s father, along with his constant work at the farm, act as obstacles on his path towards academic achievement. However, he ultimately manages to find ways to continue his studies and eventually ends up extremely successful at the academy he dreamed of attending. He recognises that academic success isn’t everything, valuing kindness towards his peers and his personal hobbies greatly.

These lessons are key when returning to university. It’s okay to have turbulence in life and it is okay that this may affect your academic work. Part of university is the balance we strike between every complex element of life. This includes extracurricular activities, self-care and spending time with friends, as well as the recognition that failure is a completely natural part of academia, and indeed, life itself.


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