Aysha is a third year student, studying Criminology with Quantitative Methods, and has a cat named Buster.
Was I ready for university?
I remember waking up to check my UCAS results. It was a difficult sleep that night and the wait was agonising to say the least. Once I knew I had been accepted at City, University of London, I breathed a sigh of relief only to be bombarded with troublesome thoughts.
The idea of travelling further away and on my own, using the train, making new friends, adjusting to a new environment and different teaching methods was quite overwhelming.
You’re probably wondering if university lived up to these thoughts and well… of course not. I was overthinking!
“It’s easy to forget that you’re not the only new student there and many have also enrolled so we’re actually all on the same boat.”
The social life at university makes settling so much easier
The first whole week was fresher’s week where we could socialise, play games, attend parties and ease into university life.
The best thing about university is that it’s much more than just books and results.
There is an ABUDUNCE of activities that aid your personal and social growth. (With Covid restrictions you can find events online and taking place digitally so you won’t miss out!)
What to do with the extra time?!!
I only attend uni 3-4 days a week so I decided to start earning some money on the side by getting a part time job. A lot of my work has been through university who offers various job opportunities such as the Widening Participation team where we work with young people from underprivileged backgrounds to see higher education as a realistic option. As well as Tutoring where I went to a local primary school and tutored kids.
There’s also an onsite recruitment agency called Unitemps where you can apply to work – the job opportunities are flexible around your studying hours which allowed me to focus on both as they did not clash.
And if it’s not work, then there are countless societies you can join. For example, gaming society, Islamic Society, cheerleading society, Pakistani society etc. They’re like clubs but much better. You can even create your own kind!
What about studying? Assessments? Exams?!
Let’s face it, the reality is this is what most, if not ALL students dread. Almost as if judgement day has arrived! But not to worry because throughout the whole year City is available to help.
The beginning of my university life included a module of study skills, a workshop where you were taught all the essentials of writing, researching, and reading for university life. This was a great aid as it provided me support for independent learning.
There are various learning support facilities as well as mental health support, so you are never really alone here. Personally, my favourite support system is the community we have at City. In particular, the faith room which enables me to pray whenever I want and connect with those who carry the same beliefs as me. It also acts as a space where I can reconnect if the university stress ever gets too much.
The support you have at City is endless: you’re allocated personal tutors who are available whenever you need and to check in with you; your lecturers provide 1 on 1 support; and seminar teachers can guide you in the best possible way for your exam preparation.
Exams and assessment deadlines are spread out so that there is not a built up of pressure. So actually, it isn’t as stressful as it may seem!
My degree is Criminology with Quantitative Methods. My degree focuses on causes and contexts of crime. This includes theories, the Criminal Justice System and how society reacts to crime.
The Q-Step programme is an opportunity available to social science students who want to stand out by having quantitative skills (using numbers/analytical data).
My degree has a mixture of assessment and exams and choosing the QM method allowed me to go on placement where I could apply my skills to the real world.
Pheww… that was a LOT
But one final thing to remember is these 3 years FLY by so make sure to have plenty of fun!
Aysha gives a great overview of all the different aspects of university life. If your thinking of going to university and if you do, whatever university you decide to go to, doing your research will help you find out about the support services, careers opportunities and societies and social events you can take part in.