One of the main things that I love about Essex is that an equal importance is given to both academic studies and your student experience. Whilst getting a good degree is important, University is much more than that. The amount of opportunities and experiences that are open to you because you are a University student is wide ranging and immense.
Here are three of my personal favourites…
Societies and Sports Teams
A week at Essex rarely goes by where you don’t see society stalls on Square 3, or sports teams in weird and wonderful costumes off to Fed (a night out in the Student Union). The hundreds of societies and sports teams are integral to the Essex experience, as they give students the chance to take part in a range of activities and meet like-minded people at the same time.
Not only can you take part in the stuff you already enjoy, it’s so great knowing that you have loads of opportunity to try something completely new, that you might never have thought of before. Ranging from Origami, to Harry Potter, to Animal Protection, there’s no end to the different societies available and new people that you can meet!
During my first two years at Essex, I was an active member of the Theatre Arts Society, where I took part in various productions, events and socials. One of my favourite moments was being a part of the yearly Pantomime in my first year. Although I was just in the chorus, I had such a great laugh taking part and it was probably the most fun I’ve ever had taking part in a show!
Although studying has to be everyone’s main priority at Uni, there are loads of opportunities to get some part time employment and earn some pocket money too! Both the Student’s Union and the University offer a variety of frontrunner and part time roles on campus throughout the year, so it’s worth keeping your eyes out for when applications open. Also, the Employability and Careers centre are brilliant if you need your CV looked over or need any help applying for jobs.
I’ve taken on a range of paid on campus work whilst I’ve been at University, from being a Student Ambassador to working on Clearing during the Summer break. What I’ve loved most about my jobs at Essex is that I could pick and choose which hours I could do, to fit around around my studies. This means that if I know I have a big assignment coming up, I can stop working for a bit whilst I catch up with my studies.
Through working, I’ve also been able to improve my skill set. My role as a Student Ambassador has allowed me to improve my communication skills, engage with a diverse range of people and it has encouraged me to regularly use my initiative. One of the best parts of the job is seeing the people that you spoke to at Open Days months later on campus as fully fledged students. It’s a good feeling to know that your work contributed to someone’s decision to come here!
Whether it’s a summer, a term or an entire year, the Essex Abroad team are awesome in offering all students the chance to spend time studying or working abroad.
I couldn’t say no to this opportunity and currently I’m in Brisbane, Australia, studying abroad for a year! This has given me the chance to experience so much, travel the world and most importantly, challenge myself on a whole new level that I didn’t even think was possible.
If you did need more convincing, then Essex is also one of the only Universities in the country not to charge tuition fees for students on a year abroad!
Just Play, Sub Zero, Lakeside Theatre, Socialising, I could go on and on about what else makes student life at Essex so great, but you get the idea!
University is much more than a degree; it’s an experience, so don’t get to the end of your final year regretting the things you didn’t do.
To see more of Perry’s adventures in Brisbane and beyond, check out his vlog here: