Interviewed and edited by Elayna Hugh-Jones
What do you study here at Newcastle University?
So I’m in my 2nd year of Biomedical science, and I’m doing a placement year in September so it’ll be a 4 year degree for me. Then I’m thinking about further study, such as a Master’s or post-grad medicine.
What does a typical day look like for you?
So I’m an early bird, I get up around 6:30 and I take some time to wake up and have breakfast. Then if we have any 9am or 10am lectures I like to go to the Uni gym beforehand to start my day on a good note, which means I leave my house in Jesmond at about 7:30. We typically have 2 or 3 lectures a day and I’ll head to the Walton Library in between if we have any breaks. But if we have no lectures, Wednesdays are usually our days off, I still head to the library and set myself up for a day there. I’ll usually take my packed lunch and stay for the majority of the day and then head home for dinner. I and my housemates tend to all eat together which is a nice part of the day to look forward to.
How do your feel about the workload on your course?
It is a tough course so it requires a lot of time and effort, which I expected, but it’s all worth it. I do choose quite a long studying method of hand-writing out every lecture from the ReCaps (recordings of the live lectures) and then making flashcards. This does take a lot of time but I just work until I fully understand the lecture content and am confident I can answer questions on the material in the exams. This is just my preferred method but I know a lot of people type up their notes or solely do practice questions. You figure out what works for you.
What do you do to unwind and take your mind off work?
I’m not great at giving myself time off, which I advise you do, but this semester I’ve found it much easier to have a break. My main way to switch off is to go to the gym, and I train with Medic’s netball as well which is fun, and that’s usually once a week. There are also always pub quizzes on which my friends and I often go, the one at Holy Hobo on a Wednesday and Sunday is great! And if I spend a Saturday in the library with my housemate, we’ll take a break and head to Grainger Market to get some fresh fruit and have a wander around, it’s kind of a tradition now.
What is your favourite part of studying at Newcastle?
Well coming from Cornwall, moving to Newcastle has been a big change but I absolutely love the city. It feels really safe because the city centre isn’t actually that big, so everything is accessible and pretty easy to navigate. In terms of Uni, it’s definitely been the people I’ve met, as cliché as that sounds, it’s true. There are also some really great lecturers as well, especially in the immunology department, which just makes the whole studying experience more interesting.
What piece of advice would you give to prospective students or 1st years studying at Newcastle?
I would recommend that you pick a course that excites you rather than basing your decision on university or location. You’ll fall in love with wherever you choose and everything else falls into place when you do this. There are also a lot of opportunities at Uni to make contacts and get involved, so you should take advantage of that whilst you’ve got the time and space to network. The worst that could happen is that someone doesn’t reply to an email!
Has your University experience been what you expected?
The first year was not, but that was becoming of COVID and having to learn everything yourself online due to lockdowns. This year has been so much better, even the little things such as seeing people in corridors, chatting between lectures, and walking to Uni make such a difference. People think it’s going to be so different from A levels but it’s really not in my opinion, you still have “lessons” and a structure to your day, it’s just more independent and you have to find a balance for yourself.
Interested in our Biomedical Sciences Degree? Find out more here: https://www.ncl.ac.uk/undergraduate/degrees/b940/
Interested in netball? Find out more here: https://www.ncl.ac.uk/sport/sport-and-fitness/intramural/netball/