Monday, 6 March 2017

What’s it really like? // University

Hello all!

Today’s post I bring you all of the wondering questions you may have as prospecting university students or for those just generally interested! The thought of university can be daunting, exciting, promising, a range of emotions and I think there are a few key things people think about before going so I hope this post answers some of these mysteries!

Now then, I have been at The University of Hertfordshire for 6 months now and I have to say time has FLOWN by shockingly fast…my first year is almost finished! When the university application process started, I was not applying and for years I had always believed that I would not hold a degree under my belt or say that I have done the whole ‘uni experience’ but halfway through this marathon of everyone doing their personal statements and making their 5 vital choices I had a moment of madness…I have to go. Personally, I have known the career I want for a few years now and after extensive research and asking around I found out that university was the easiest way forward for me so that is what I chose…and boy was I scared!

Living away from home / Home sickness

This was not one of the major things I worried about shockingly, as I felt ready to move out of my family home for a bit of independence and adventure alongside the reassurance that I could get back to London within half an hour! I live in halls and it has to be said, there are pros and cons:

However, I am glad I have moved into halls as it does give you some more independence and responsibility although it is clear some people do not deal with that well…(There have been 3 fires this year), apart from this though, a lot of flats in my block socialise with each other and a lot of the time people from your course will live around you, so you will always be surrounded by familiar faces.
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A lot of people though, found this more troubling and alongside this of course is home sickness. I know a few people who have found it harder being away from home and it is not something you can comfort exactly…all they want is to go home! But it passes with time, distractions and uni itself. For me, I speak to my mum everyday so homesickness was not a massive issue for me, of course there was the one or two blue days but you have to remember that you are in the same position as about 19,000 other students! This is what brings me onto my next point…

“What if I make no friends?!” The big worry…also the most inaccurate worry to have because come on, you are living in a flat of new people; I live with 11 other people and there’s always going to be someone in the kitchen, just getting in or sitting in the corridor to get a better Wi-Fi connection! So chances are, you are forced to make friends!
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Of course, not everyone will choose to live on campus and in halls so will commute but you are on a brand-new course with a range of different people! Chances are you will probably sit next to someone a couple of times in a lecture, form a mutual bond for each other, maybe even classify as friends…but never learn their name. Yeah this does happen. Even so, I have a few flatmates who are friends with commuters and they come to our flat all the time for pre-drinks (highlight of the week no?) and they still love it! So whoever you are, whatever you study, chances are, you will be stuck with someone somehow!

Financial situation
Too much term you mean!
Loans, rent, food, life. It is all money yes but worry not. There are lots of services universities can offer to help with money troubles! For example, our uni has a programme in which you can borrow a set loan if you cannot afford your rent or daily living so long as it is paid within a specific time frame! Also, do your research! You might be entitled to a certain governmental loan or bursary…there is an annual bursary for being veggie! So, do your research, check what you are meant to get…as well as that though try not to shop to high end, Aldi is quite the life saver for most of us! (Alcohol and pizza is cheap)

Social life
Of course, everyone thinks of university as a year of going out, going to lectures a bit worse for wear and being poor (but not too poor than you cannot afford a night out). This is somewhat true but it all depends where you go! For example, our university is in a small town in Hertfordshire and our only club is the SU called The Forum, a very decent night out yes…but the only one. 
This also depends on who you hang out with too actually, I have flatmates that are always up for a night out, some who come if they finish all of their work and some who do not go out at all, you just gotta find your match! Our university has their main student night on Wednesday (as well as Monday, Friday and Saturday) which is called Cheeky Wednesday, Always themed, £1.50 jagerbombs and 2 dance floors. This is the real highlight of the week.
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I hope this stretch of a post was relatable for some and enlightening for most! I’ll be bringing back more music based and review type posts soon so keep an eye out for those! Thanks for reading!

Until next time,
Shannon xx

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