Tasty Taster Food for Thought!
A recent visit to Queen Mary University in London provided a fantastic opportunity for one of our Year 12 pupils to get a realistic idea about what life at university will be like. The university had organised a taster day that not only showed students around campus and talked about life at university, but also offered the opportunity to attend lectures of their choice. It really seems that this is a recipe for success, as it has opened the eyes of Kate to the big world that is out there and what she needs to do in order to take a bite out of it.
So, here she is giving us her insight into the day:
Kate, why did you decide to participate in the taster day?
I thought the taster day would be a good opportunity to look at other universities outside of the North West and also a good way to experience what the universities lectures would be like. I believed that it would be a good way to meet others in the same situation as myself and see how they're coping under the stress and what they may wish to do in the future. I also thought it may be a good way to see how I would cope away from my parents and see the environment that I could possibly call home for the next 3 years.
What were your initial expectations?
I expected it to be quite different from what I'm used to, going from a school of 900 students to one with over 20,000 can be very daunting. I expected the campus to be quite busy, however as most of the students had already finished for the year it was empty. There was still a great feel about the place though!
How was the day similar/different to what you expected?
Queen Mary is a campus university in the heart of London so I expected it to be a much faster pace, but was pleasantly surprised to find myself relaxing next to a canal which ran through the campus, overlooking the Olympic Velodrome after the day was over. It was much greener than I imagined and also you couldn't hear anything from the main road just outside. The lecturers were all very accommodating and couldn't help you enough; they were very passionate about their subjects, which showed through the conversations.
What did you enjoy?
I most enjoyed meeting the other students from all over the UK, seeing their perspectives and how they were similar or varied from my own. The campus tour was beautiful, as were the students and teachers helping out. The city of London itself was a pleasure to be in, it always seemed to buzz as though something out of the ordinary was on the edge of occurring.
Is there anything in particular that you learnt?
One of the seminars that I attended included a discussion regarding the use of time in novels and the extent that it can be used for. I recently included this in a piece of work I produced in school and it's helped me also with my A2 coursework.
What are your next steps?
I'm currently looking for a summer job so I can gain experience for my CV as well as beginning my EPQ, which will give me a chance to mention some interests in a personal statement. I've been looking at lots of uni's and just trying to piece my future together, basically.
What advice would you give to other Year 12 students?
Start looking at uni's now! You're pushing it already, if you don't start looking now all the good places will be gone and you'll be left somewhere you don't actually like, doing a course you don't want to do. Look for jobs this summer if you haven't already and try and make your CV as interesting as possible.