To go to Warwick, or not to go to Warwick? (Part 1 – Choosing Uni)
That is THE question.
To help you answer it, I’m going to give you an insight into why I chose Warwick, and whether I stand by my choices.
Campus. The first key decision I made was to go to a campus uni over a city uni. Personally, I really like the idea of having everything within walking distance and being part of a community (because Warwick uni is like a small town, with over 20000 people!).
Some people describe campus life as living in ‘a bubble’, but I think it’s wonderful, because I feel that this is my campus. Plus, with Warwick Arts Centre and a very active Students Union, there’s always some drama that you absolutely won’t get in a city uni:
Where else can you wake up to the sweet sound of bagpipes and walk past a man on stilts on the way to a lecture?
Or watch Eurovision with over 100 students in the piazza?
Or buy some Greek souvlaki and Italian cannoli on a Wednesday afternoon?
Such are the wonders of living on campus, and Warwick’s campus in particular.
Location. We’re in the Midlands, which to some may seem like we’re in the middle of nowhere… but we’re also in the middle of everywhere. It doesn’t take long to travel to any other part of the country.
As I come from the local area, Warwick uni isn’t far from home at all. Now, to some this may seem horrifying, but it’s really not much different to going to uni 3 hours away. Except whenever I wanted to go home in first year (I stayed on campus) I easily could. For me, ‘campus uni’ + ‘close to home’ is the perfect combination because I can separate my home and uni life but switch between the two easily and whenever I want (without breaking the bank).
Global. Forget people from different parts of the country (Northerners vs Southerners…), we have people from all parts of the world. Warwick has a distinctly international feel, not just because of the international students but because there are so many opportunities to do things with a global outlook and impact. For me, this is one of the most exciting things about uni. This is international love, people.
Multidisciplinary. I have varied interests, which made it difficult to choose my degree subject. So, I was really pleased to see that Warwick offers many opportunities to explore beyond my home department. The Institute of Advanced Teaching and Learning (IATL), for example, offer interdisciplinary modules across the university – this year, they have included ‘The Science of Music’ and ‘Laughter: a Transdisciplinary Approach’. Sounds cool, no?
The Arts Centre. I know I’ve mentioned this before, but it’s worth repeating – we have an epic Arts Centre on campus. In fact, it’s the largest Arts venue in the country outside of London.
What does that mean? It means getting the chance to watch my favourite TV comedians live, listen to classical music, and experience all the weird and wonderful stuff in between. And it’s all on campus.
This is one of the biggest reasons I chose Warwick. As a STEM student, I need to get a healthy dose of the Arts to feed my imagination. One of my main aims when joining Warwick was to get involved in the Arts Centre. I’m now volunteering as a performance steward, which has the massive benefit of being able to watch the shows I steward for free! (EPIIIIIIIC)
At the end of the day…
The choice is yours. It is a highly personal choice, which is why the reasons I chose my University may not be the reasons why you choose yours.
It may feel like a lot of pressure – it did for me! Here’s my advice about choosing uni in general:
· Listen to your gut and pay attention to how you feel about the university.
· Whichever university you end up going to, what really matters is what you choose to do while you’re there.
· Don’t worry about making the wrong choice. If things really go downhill, you are under no obligation to be stuck forever with your degree/university.
· Remember that this choice is about where you will be spending the next couple of years – not the rest of your life.
That being said, I’m going to tell you this:
I chose Warwick. I’m glad I did.
For my Computer Science tribe (I’m not letting you go just yet): there’s a second part to this post, which focuses on why I chose Warwick’s Department of Computer Science.
I’ve also written a post about what to consider during Open Days, relevant to offer holders.