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Nottingham: Probably the best University in the world!
University of Nottingham in general
Member Name: djdanny
University of Nottingham in general
Date: 01/07/04, updated on 01/07/04 (2609 review reads)
Advantages: friendly, green, fun
Disadvantages: nothing, its great!
OK, since I've finished my first year at Nottingham now, so I feel like I can write something about it that might be useful for people thiking of going to this University.
I first went to Nottingham on an open day as most people do. The first thing you notice if you've been to other universities is how big and green it is. Of the top of my head the figure 330 acres springs to mind, so, if that sounds about right, then thats how big it is. I could be hopeless wrong and thinking of something else, but I'm quite sure it?s that. The university was built on land donated by the Boots family (as in the high street shop). I presume there was nothing much there before as where there hasn't been any buildings built, the campus is mostly grass. There's also a reasonably large lake and also other nice areas such as the millennium gardens (that?ll mean nothing to most people but I?ll give some links at the end). As I live near London, it was quite different to seeing universities near me! Of course the large nature of the campus itself can mean that you end up walking for up to 20 minutes to lectures, though this depends which halls you are in and what subject you do. I was in Cavendish Hall, one of three that is furthest away from the main teaching buildings which meant a walk of about 10-15 minutes for attending most lectures which was normally quite pleasant and there is a bus service around campus if you're lazy or its raining. Apart from the bus, some people do bring cars, but not that many really. Students living in hall are discouraged from taking there cars by the fact that there isn't a lot of parking space and you run a realistic risk of getting fined or clamped if you don't have permission to park where you have parked. I don't drive myself so I may be slightly biased on this issue, but I think this is a g
ood thing really, as public transport into and around Nottingham is pretty good and taxi services aren't that expensive especially as most places you go you will normally be sharing a cab with 3 or 4 other people. Getting a taxi into town will cost about 6 or 7 pounds most of the time and split between five that?s only a little more than getting the bus.
Talking of going into town, the chances are that you?ll be doing this a lot in the first year. Nottingham has a range of good clubs and bars, many of which you will probably have been to within the first week or two. Week One, fresher?s week, is a time where you should be going out pretty much every night and meeting a lot of people on the way. Make sure you do meet most people in your hall at this point. Oh and yes, you will forget everyone?s name and everyone will forget yours, but it?s never a problem. I was quite lucky in that I made friends with most of my friends within the first week and we formed a group early on. However this isn?t always the case and its quite normal for people to meet not the people they end up moving in with the next year right at the start. That?s the point I?m at but there?s no point in worrying about that yet if you?re not there!
Halls are by far where you will spend most of your time and its very likely that most of your friends you make will be from there rather than from your course, though again, I must qualify this by saying I?m doing economics which is quite a popular course and on courses with less people on them you will see the same people more often in lectures and tutorials and get to know them more. I found on my course though that nearly all the people I know by name on my course are those who are (were :( sniff sniff? ) in my hall.
One, may the only disappointing thing in my first year is that its completely true that the Student Union does very little indee
d. There are a lot of societies to join but I?m sure a lot do much. There are societies for each nearly every subject I think (there was no sociology society last year but a friend of mine is starting one next year), which can be good in order to get to know people on your course, but I found myself interested in few others and friends of mine that joined societies to try something new, for example the archery society or badminton society, found that events are not that often and that just because you are a member does not mean things will be free, sometimes just cheaper than for non-members. I found myself going to few union related activities and you could very easily go to none. The problem I think is that it is easiest to sign up for societies in the first week and few people decide to go and try something new by themselves. This means that unless you?ve already met friends who also want to try the same thing, you will either have to pluck up the courage to try something new all alone, or miss out.
Probably the group I?ve participated most in which many people do not because they don?t know much about it is Karni, which is a charity group run by students at the University. In fact I believe it?s the biggest student charity organisation in the world, though that could be propaganda I?ve been fed. I?m sure it?s at least the biggest in the country though. Now you?ve probably already lost interest since I mentioned the word charity. Most people do. I must confess that when I first heard what they had to say I didn?t really believe the line, ?I know it sounds cr*p but its really good, honest?, but its true. For the first few months, they take groups of students from uni to different cities around the UK (Sheffield, Newcastle, Liverpool, Leeds and Edinburgh to name a few) and then you collect money for a certain charity while you?re
there. And then get a bus home. Or, that?s what its meant to be. This is hard to do while trying not to tarnish the name of a charity group? Actually, most people collect for 2 or 3 hours properly throughout the day and get to have lunch out and spend an hour or two around a new city, going shopping, meeting friends, or staying in a pub and watching the footy (its always on saturdays). The ride back to uni then consists of erm, to put it politely, relaxing with a drink or two of the famous Karni cocktail and ?banter? between different halls sharing a bus, ending with a night out at the union bar. Now, although clearly the fun can be said to start when the work ends, some of the most memorable bits are spent collecting (often dressed up) and meeting people in the street. Meeting war veterans thanking you for collecting for the poppy appeal and people who have benefited from the work of a cancer charity you are collecting for are touching experiences and I have often found myself lost for words. I also remember a security guard at Gap in Newcastle who I thought I had been annoying by standing just outside the shop and pestering every customer that came in for several hours, so when I went inside for a second to warm up my numb hands I was not expecting him to congratulate me on the great job I was doing rather than throwing me out.
Errm, I can?t think of anything else to say about the university or Nottingham, so I guess that?s it. If anyone is thinking of going and has any questions, feel free to comment or ask me on tooyoo. I don?t have much else to do till I go on holiday! Also, have a look at the University website (www.nottingham.ac.uk) and the BBC website is good too, to find out about Nottingham in general, student life and see some 360-views of the university without actually being there (www.bbc.co.uk/nottingham).