I have almost finished my degree. I’ve submitted my last assignments and finished my lectures. The only thing I still have to do is to finish my dissertation. To make the most out of my last days as a student, my friends and I decided to explore Cornwall a bit more and visit these three amazing places. (more…)
Olga April 9th, 2019 Cornwall, Exploring Devon and Cornwall, International, Life in the South West, Life on Campus, Lifestyle, Penryn Campus, Undergraduate cornwall, exploring cornwall, international, life in the south west, life on campus, penryn campus, travelling, undergraduate, university of exeter
More than two years ago, I had to make one of the most important decisions in my life – choosing a university.
I was not familiar with the whole English system, how it works, what UCAS is and what factors to look at while choosing universities – I didn’t know where to start.
As I was looking at Business or Economics degrees, I found out that the University of Exeter Business School was one of the Top 10 Business schools in the UK. I also noticed that the BSc Business programme requires students to do a work placement every year while doing the degree, which I thought was a great opportunity to enhance my employability.
Olga May 22nd, 2018 Cornwall, International, Lectures and Seminars, Life in the South West, Life on Campus, Penryn Campus, Preparing for University, Studying, Undergraduate applying to university, exeter, first year, international, life in the south west, life on campus, penryn campus, preparing for university, second year, undergraduate, university
1. Tremough house
Tremough house is one of the oldest buildings on the Penryn Campus. Some students have their lectures and tutorials in the house which was originally built in the 18th Century.
Olga April 16th, 2018 Cornwall, Exploring Devon and Cornwall, Higher Education, International, Life in the South West, Life on Campus, Penryn Campus, Studying, Undergraduate applying to university, exeter, instagrammable spots, international, life in the south west, life on campus, penryn campus, places on campus, preparing for university, study abroad, undergraduate, university
My week of taking over the Exeter student-run Instagram account – @ExeterUniLife.
My first day of the week. I’m really excited to look after the Instagram account and inspired to make the most out of the next 7 days.
I spent most of my day on campus – went to the Finance lecture and seminars and stayed in the library.
Olga March 6th, 2018 Cornwall, Higher Education, International, Life in the South West, Life on Campus, Penryn Campus, Studying, Undergraduate Business school Exeter, exeter, international, life in the south west, penryn campus, preparing for university, travelling, undergraduate, university
On the last day of winter, Falmouth and the whole country turned into a Winter Wonderland. As I am from a country (Russia) where snow is something completely normal, I was very excited to see the reaction of people who have never seen snow before. I was one of the of the people in my house who woke up early and saw the magical snow outside my window. (more…)
Olga March 6th, 2018 Cornwall, International, Life in the South West, Undergraduate beast from the east, exeter, international, life in the south west, life on campus, penryn campus, preparing for university, second year, studying, undergraduate, university
It can be difficult to differentiate between a postgraduate taught course (PGT) and an undergraduate degree. After all, both are taught! But a Masters degree is quite different from an undergraduate degree. I’m doing MSc in Food Security and Sustainable Agriculture, which is very different from my undergraduate degree in Biological Sciences.
So here are my top 10 differences between an undergraduate and a taught Masters… (more…)
Term two of second year has gotten off to a great start. I’m so glad to be back in the buzz of university life, have a schedule of basketball practices and Exeposé meetings to structure my week around and get stuck back into my degree. I was thrilled with how well received my One Second Everyday video was when it was shared on Exeter’s official Facebook page; 276 likes, 37 shares and over 5,000 views and counting! Looking back on it has made me realise how much fun I had last term – and how important it is to make the most of daily things; the walk to campus on a beautiful day, or weekend pancakes with my housemates. I will definitely be keeping it up for 2016, and now that I know the ropes of making a good compilation hopefully this one will be better than ever!
Today though, I thought I’d make a post on a more academic vein than I usually prefer to opt for. There’s no doubt that university life involves so much more than the degree, but it’s also important to appreciate we’re only here because of our degree.
Thus ends the first week of my final term here at Exeter. My friends and I feel a bit like we’re in limbo – people are forever asking about our plans for the future, and we’re thinking ever-more about what to do after we leave university. Some people are intimidatingly organised, and some of us have precious little clue as to what’s next (I’m in the latter category). Sometimes it feels like I’m wishing graduation forward, and have half-left uni already. So, since I’ve personally ruled out post-graduate options which would require full organisation now, I’ve temporarily suspended thinking about the future until the freedom of Summer term.
Seeing in the New Year in a living room jam-packed with my friends from home, I took a moment to contemplate how much I have to look forward to in 2016. There’s terms two and three, holidays and summer plans, a new beginning in starting second year and – rather frighteningly – my 21st birthday. Of all of these, it’s the latter that jumps out at me as the next twelve months’ largest milestone. Perhaps because I am – relatively speaking, anyway – pretty old for a first year. Whilst many of my flatmates and friends here celebrated reaching 18 last spring or summer, I turned 20 on a rather grey (and self-pitying) day in autumn. The phrase “in my twenties” just sounds far more adult than I feel.
Though conversations about age have seldom come up during my time at university so far, I know that being outside of the stock 18-year-old age bracket of freshers is a concern for many prospective students.
“It will be the best years of your life” was something I heard a lot before starting university. The process of moving away to study holds a kind of mythical status: whilst in sixth form, it represents an ideal of independence; for misty-eyed relatives and teachers, submerged by commuter trains and a nine-to-five, it’s a rose-tinted memory of carefree freedom. Yet in the thick of life as a fresher it can feel like something else entirely. Balancing new academic challenges with a deluge of pressures on finance, image, sexuality and social behaviour can be hugely isolating and overwhelming – especially if you have to learn to use a hob and a washing machine at the same time.
Things are doubly testing if you have done them all before and have it not work out. I started at Exeter this September after leaving another institution halfway through my first term last year and even the thought of returning to education was terrifying.
I decided that it was kind of boring if all my blog titles just always consisted of dates so I tried to jazz it up a little. We’ll see how that goes. Perhaps my lack of foresight for my titles gestures at the fact that I might not be a very forward thinker, but hey, from here on out, it can only get better, right?
And the same can be said for my second week in Exeter. This is going to sound super nerdy, but this past week was the first week of classes and I have to say, I quite enjoyed it. I felt in my element again surrounded by my works of literature and lined paper. (A4 paper here is not the same as A4 paper back home, though. Here, it is just that little bit longer so the ends of all my handouts stick out of my binders and frustrate me to no end.) For folks who may not be as enthusiastic about my academic endeavours as I will soon prove to be, feel free to skip the next two paragraphs because there will be a lot of raving about the classes I’m taking.
The fourteen-year-old Connor was probably secretly quite ignorant, as well as insecure, prudish, horribly narrow-minded and the size of an average moon. He was a stubborn creature of habit, living in a bubble the size of his postcode area, steadfast to the idea of living, working and existing within the UK. Bizarre for someone who was starting to realise that his academic career was geared towards foreign languages. The twenty-two (going on twenty-three (gulp)) -year-old Connor is radically quite different. Why? I owe it to the Year Abroad, of course.
In so many ways I’m glad I’m not a fresher anymore! I really hate awkward small talk and your first year is full of it. So, what subject are you doing? What halls are you staying in? Where are you from? It gets a little repetitive. You can be a maverick and open the conversation with a curveball question like “So what type of dragon would you have, if you could own one?” But, as much as I like pondering such scenarios, in my experience, people don’t like to be caught off-guard. You will meet a lot of people trying to act ‘normal’ (although, everyone’s weird on the inside) therefore you might play at being ‘normal’ yourself.
A friend that I work with is starting university this October and so I’ve been thinking of various tips and pearls of wisdom I might give her. I found the first 3 months really hard but I don’t want to tell her, or anyone, that for fear of putting her off. She’ll have a great time, I know that for certain, but not everyone will have an amazing experience. So here is what I have to say to you, my fellow misfits.
Having said my goodbyes and arriving at the central station in Munich, I was not sure what to expect of the year ahead of me. I had set goals such as integrating myself with the locals, improving my German and taking advantage of Munich’s central location to travel around Europe. Each of these goals was given attention throughout the year and was a stepping stone in helping me to develop as a person.
A week from today, I will be seated on a plane flying from Toronto to Glasgow. It will be the longest plane ride I have ever been on, the longest day of travel I’ve ever had to endure, and the most terrifying journey I will have ever experienced. It will be the first time that I will be completely and utterly on my own. No friends. No family. Just me and a boarding pass.
I am thrilled.
Of course, I am scared beyond belief, that I cannot deny. But if you were to know me, you would know that this is my lifelong dream. It’s something I’ve longed for, prayed for, ached for, and I almost didn’t let myself have it.
Until one day, I made a decision.