hi everyone, hope you are all well and feeling and amazing sense of post-results day relief!
I went to collect my cousins with her and I was hit with a massive wave of nostalgia. It was almost four years ago that I was in your shoes, running to my sixth form desperately hoping I got the grades I wanted.
I've got one year of my BA left so my journey is nearly over, but you lucky people, yours is just beginning. And what a journey it's going to be... You are going to have so much fun at uni, whether you've moved away from home for the first time, or you are still living there, or you are a mature student going back into education.
In the next few weeks there is going to be a lot of stuff going down as we lead up to Fresher's, induction and enrolment and the start of classes, so I've assembled for you my top five tips for starting university. These are the things I wish someone had told me when I was in your shoes!
So here we go:
1) It is ok to cry! I did. A lot. My first night in halls I was the only one in the whole flat and I have never felt more alone. So I had some macaroni cheese, and then I had a cry. And then I felt better. So don't think you have to be all brave about it - some people take to it like a duck to water, but for others it takes a little longer, and that is ok!
2) Under 25 Railcards can be "attached" to your Oyster card for a cheaper rail fare. If you have got a young persons railcard (16-25) head to customer services at the train station and get them to link the cards, which gives you reduced train and tube travel and also means the card will cap at the lower rate of £5.60 rather than £8.00
3) Hoard 20p pieces and £1 coins like a Klepto! If you are living in halls and planning on doing your washing in the launderette (I'd like to hope that is everyone but you can never be sure...) keep those coins for the machines so you don't have to run around everywhere looking for someone who can change a £20 note.
4) Look for part time work in the uni as well as outside. Keep an eye out on the KUSU website (http://www.kusu.co.uk/studentjobs) for job vacancies in the libraries, shops and unions as well as seasonal work such as Freshers Angels. These jobs often pay better and are more flexible than external work.
5) Attend your inductions. For Gods sake if you ignore everything else I say please do this! Whether it is your introductory lectures or just a meet and greet with the faculty - go to them!! Yes even thoughit is 9am and you are horribly hungover from ring of fire the night before. Sometimes you'll be given important info like deadline dates, assessment information or module guides. Irrespective of that though it is also a good opportunity to meet the people you are spending the next several years of your life with (staff and students). I met my best friends for first year in the introductory drama lecture and it meant when we started classses I had at least one ally in the insanity.
So that's it, my five best bits of advice. Can not wait to meet you all! I'll be waiting for you at the Freshers Fayre - I'll be the one with bright blue hair looking very excited!
Hola beautiful people!
I hope you guys had a fantastic, sun-filled summer! I surely did! I went back home and luckily secured some work experience at a law firm. I shadowed the Attorneys, drafted legal documents and conducted legal research. I ensured I jotted down everything I did so that I can make my CV look gorgeous! It was honestly a great experience and now I am ready and motivated to get final year cracking!
However- just because summer is done, doesn't mean work is. There are a lot of part-time jobs on campus (such as being part of the awesome Student Ambassador Squad) available for students to make some mula, whether it's to do some shopping or help with some bills you have.
What is great about working part-time is that it shows future employers that not only can you handle multiple responsibilities, but you know how to manage your time effectively, and make the most out of your time. It helps you improve skills such as communication, which you can add to your CV, making it more gorgeous ;).
So during this Fresher's Week while you are getting to know your surroundings, joining awesome clubs, and partying it up at the Fresher's Ball (information on it below), also look around for any work opportunities, whether it be on or off campus (I'd suggest on campus, where they cater to your schedule and respect that being a student is #1).
Adios for now!
This blog is a bit of a long one but bear with me! I really tried to cover as many questions as possible that you might have about accommodation. So, this week I had the wonderful opportunity to be part of the events for students who have come to Kingston University through Clearing. Let me just tell you- I had an amazing two days meeting so many inspiring individuals! If you'd like to check out just how much fun we had, look for #GetSet4KU on Twitter and go onto Kingston University Undergraduate 2013 Entry on Facebook.
Meeting such a big group of people on both days also meant that I had to be prepared to answer their questions and provide comfort for all their anxieties. On of the biggest concerns for the group on the second day was A C C O M M O D A T I O N!
Now, I admit that it is scary not to know where you will be living, especially when you are not familiar with the area. However, I must say, fear not! Properties can still be found during the year and new ones come on the market every day! So DO NOT trust the agencies that tell you that there are no properties and you won't be able to find anything else than the ridiculously expensive house or flat they have showed you.
Another tip: DO NOT sign up for a two-year contract! Things might change, you might realize you want to live with different people at a different place. Which leads me to: DO be careful when choosing the people you will be living with! After all, you will be stuck with them for a while and you have to make sure you at least get along.
The typical rent for students in the area is between 350 and 470 pounds per month. In my opinion, anything and everything over 500 pounds per month for students in the area is a bit of a rip-off.
• Look for advantages such as water bills included in your rent or an energy-saving boiler.
In terms of where you can look for properties, here is a list of ways you can find student accommodation:
Halls of Residence: There are different types of rooms and various locations. Just as a general idea, the halls of residence for Kingston University are: Clayhill, Seething Wells, Middle Mill, Kingston Bridge House, IQ Wave and Kingston Hill. In addition, plenty of private and university accommodation is being built at the moment. For the full list of prices, you can click here. If you are on the waiting list, just have patience; you should receive an e-mail in the next couple of weeks about whether you have been approved or not. Everyone moves in at halls of residence on different dates, according to what course you are doing and when you start. It might be the case that you are offered a place in a month or so, when someone else has decided they don't want their room.
Headed Tenancy a.k.a Renting Through the University: This is what I am doing now! I lived in Clayhill Halls of Residence during my first year and this is where I met one of my current flatmates. I loved my experience at halls and I quite like the place we live at now. Headed Tenancy will basically provide you with a list of properties available to rent through the university. Then you can apply and you will receive a call if you (and your group) have been approved and have a viewing. Advantages: your deposit is smaller than what you would have to pay if you were renting through an agency; you are backed by the university in case any problems arise.
DailyVacancy List: It is basically: ‘A constantly updating list of rooms and properties from lodgings to house rentals in the private sector. You can advertise rooms that are available in your house share for free. Unless stated, the accommodation advertised on the Daily Vacancy List is not owned, managed or approved by the University. This list is for use by Kingston University students only.' http://www.kingston.ac.uk/accommodation/private-accommodation/#university
I am sure I have failed to cover absolutely every safe option for you. However, keep in mind that if you are looking for information, you can find it on My Kingston! Alternatively, you can always go to the ground floor of the John Galsworthy (JG) building at Penhryn Road (the main campus) and speak to someone from accommodation.
The Kingston University Knights Park student union bar on a fundraiser night.
Uploaded 20 Dec 2013
Sport at Kingston
Uploaded 20 Dec 2013
My Hobby - Photography
Uploaded 20 Dec 2013