September is often a month that represents change with the autumnal equinox and the start of new school years. For some, it can also mean the start of University life!
Former student Amy left NCW in June 2022 and has just started her first year at the University of Gloucestershire studying Journalism.
Here is an account of Amy’s first week…
“On 10 September, I moved into my university accommodation ahead of the induction week due to commence on the 12 September. My campus is home to the schools of; Art, Computing and Engineering and creative industries all of which host a variety of courses that students are undertaking!
On Monday 12 September, all of the creative industries students gathered in the main lecture theatre and had a welcome presentation from the Head of the School. We went through various different aspects of the University such as the Student Union, library, chaplaincy and student services, as well as stressing the importance of getting involved especially with things like the creative industries fair happening in November. Each course group was then split up and taken to different rooms to have individual course talks. In the talk that I was involved in, we went through what we could expect from this year and heard from some recent graduates who had gone into different workplaces, from PR and social media, to working at the BBC.
Tuesday dawned a new day and the Journalism students met at 9am to board a coach ready for a trip around Cheltenham and Gloucester. However, this was no ordinary trip around Gloucestershire… this trip was a challenge! We were split into teams of four and throughout the day at various different locations, we had to answer questions, take photos and film Vox Pops (short videos that ask someone about a topical issue). We started the day off by climbing up Cleeve Hill, which is the highest point in Gloucestershire and the Cotswolds. After enjoying the views, we descended and proceeded to Pitville Park where we had the task of talking to members of the public about how their summer went, and we got to talk to a lovely couple with two dogs!
We visited Cheltenham town centre to discover historical information and identify different statues and fountains.
We were next off to Gloucester, where we visited the cathedral to sign the book of condolence for The Queen, as well as explore the cathedral cloisters where some scenes of Harry Potter were filmed! We also visited the docks, crossed the rainbow crossing, visited shops and cafes, and recorded another Vox Pop with someone who had been travelling the UK doing a history tour by boat!
A very full on, but fun day.
Wednesday was Welcome Fair day which gave students the opportunity to look at different societies that are put on by the Student Union. There were all sorts of sports societies such as American football and fencing. There were also external businesses and organisations that attended to talk to students; such as nightclubs, guides and scouts, Cheltenham festivals and Dominos.
I must say, I think the Dominos stall giving away free pizza and prizes was the most popular stall of all!
Thursday and Friday consisted of meeting with course leaders to find out more about our Journalism course, including the various modules and what is required to be able to pass the NCTJ exams – the main accreditation needed in journalism.
All freshman students will have similar experiences across the country when they arrive at University. Whilst it may seem like a scary experience at first, I can assure you it’s not and I’m really happy that I made the decision to go to University. I already feel supported and have met some great people.”