University In five words - Nicole

university in 5 words

By Nicole Correia,

We asked a number of students to describe their university experience in five words, to give you an overview of what to expect.


This is the first word that sprung to mind when describing university. It’s bloody brilliant and hilarious comes as standard. Every day there is something that makes me laugh (often into hysterical fits) – generally it happens within student accommodation situations, or at social gatherings but sometimes a lecturer can fluff up his words really badly and the entire theatre is laughing (with the lecturer,  not at them, of course!)


Uni can be overwhelming - and I promise you this isn’t just a girly thing. The work load can really get on top of you sometimes, and you at first you might not have a clue how to get it all done on time. This panics me frequently, but it isn’t the only thing that can overwhelm you at university. Moving away from home and all things familiar is a big step and sometimes you just need a few home comforts to stop you feeling so far away. To stop me feeling overwhelmed I grab a Gregg’s sausage roll (there is an abundance of Gregg’s shops near where I live) and I go home, put the kettle on, and have a bath. Then I’m right as rain, ready to crack on. Coping with first year panics is something not to worry about – there are also people on hand to help.


It sounds a bit weird, perhaps, to describe uni as ‘important’ but I’d be surprised if you went and didn’t agree with me. Whilst you’re a student, university timetables and commitments shape your life. If you’re part of a sports team, for example, the training sessions are really important and you have to balance the time out between them, your studies, and your social life. Uni is important to me as it has enabled me to continue studying subjects I love and has enabled me to have a life experience you can’t get without going. The friends I’ve made here, too, are pretty important to me.


It’s inspiring not only through its teaching but also through the opportunity it provides. I have managed to develop my writing skills, for example, outside of university teachings and it has been a big part of my life for the past year or so. I began writing for the student newspaper, Spark*, and here I am writing for a university website, editing other people’s work, recruiting new writers and learning lots about the digital world. I have also been inspired by people I have met at university, especially those with goals and aspirations. After talking to a friend, who ran the Reading Half Marathon last year, I have challenged myself to do exactly the same!


You cannot imagine uni. You have to go and do it. It’s just not what you’d imagine! You know what your student accommodation rooms look like before you move in but you simply cannot imagine, before you get there, what it REALLY is like living in halls, at university, with your friends and peers all within walking distance from you at all times. It’s also hard to imagine how quickly you will academically develop, but you do. Uni has made a massive impact on me, for the better, and now I can hardly imagine life after uni anymore! If only we could all stay in education as a student forever.