The ultimate guide to study spaces

As semester one looms towards its inevitable end, the work stacks up. Deadlines and exams create a black cloud over our January. One of the biggest struggles, aside from the writer’s block and revision fatigue, is finding a place to work in the library. Something that I have found very important during my time at the University is finding a place that suits you best.

Below, I have combined mine and some of my peers’ experiences in order to create the ultimate guide to study spaces at the University of Sheffield. So, if this is your first semester here and you’re stuck for choice, or you’ve got into a rut and want somewhere new to spark some inspiration, then read on! Continue reading

Reflecting on my Erasmus semester abroad Summer 2018

This post will reflect on my semester studying abroad in Cologne, Germany, and encourage those considering studying abroad to take the plunge. I studied English Literature at Universität zu Köln on the Erasmus+ programme in my second semester of second year, as a voluntary part of my three-year English and History undergraduate degree. You can find my post on learning German here. After my first month living in Cologne, I wrote a post on the main culture shocks, which you can find here. Despite those differences from my home life, sometimes exciting and others simply frustrating, my five months on the Erasmus+ programme were full of new experiences, travel, and lovely friends. Although my stay was not without its difficulties, a natural occurrence when moving your life to a new country for half a year (more to follow in another post), here are the most rewarding highlights from my semester abroad.

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Top tips for a stress-free Erasmus semester abroad

Heading into the new year, in which many of you may be preparing to jet off on your Erasmus or study abroad, here are three important things to plan ahead. Following my previous post reflecting on my Erasmus semester abroad, here are my top tips for making your trip as stress-free and organised as possible, so you can spend more time enjoying the (cliché but true) experience of a lifetime. Continue reading

Sheffield for under £5

Exams are approaching rapidly and I wanted to compile a short list of some fun stuff to do in either an evening or afternoon off from revising or to relax once their finally over. The four I ended up picking all cost £5 or less but the last two are out near Meadowhall so, unless you have a car or other transport, there will be the cost of the tram. We tend to eat out at Meadowhall (or Ikea) and make a good trip out of it. Continue reading

A Veggie-Friendly Tour of Sheffield’s Christmas Markets

Biting weather, long nights, and shining snowflake lights: that’s right, it’s Christmas time already. And what would the festive season be without an obligatory Christmas market in the city? With the autumn term wrapping up many students may have disappeared home for Christmas, but if you’re still around Sheffield over the winter break it’s well worth taking a stroll through the city’s Christmas market, particularly when there’s so much vegetarian grub to sink your teeth in to. Continue reading

How to fight your inner Grinch: spending the Christmas season away from home

It’s that time of the year again. Chocolate Santas and gingerbread men have taken over the supermarkets and a never-ending playlist of Christmas songs encourages you to buy some more mince pies than you really need. Christmas has always been my favourite holiday, I’m one of those annoying people who starts singing Christmas songs in mid-summer, but being a university student can affect your Christmas spirit quite a bit. Between essay deadlines and exam revision, Christmas can actually come as a real surprise. Suddenly, the holidays are there, you find yourself sitting beneath a marvellously decorated tree, thinking about your upcoming exams, and being more of a Grinch than one of Santa’s joyful elfs. I’m in my fifth year of university and have spent Christmas time in three different countries during that period. Over the years, I’ve developed my own strategy to make Christmas season away from home a cheerful experience and I thought I’d share some of it with you guys.

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Why I didn’t choose a ‘real’ degree

When people ask me degree I’m studying, it’s pretty certain that I’m going to be met with the same reaction: ‘Oh, so you want to be a teacher?’ My response? God, no. Even as I clicked that button on UCAS launching my application to study English Literature with no concept whatsoever of what I was going to be when I grew up, I knew without a doubt that teaching was not the career for me. So what did this mean? If I wasn’t going to be a teacher, what was I actually going to do?

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My first multi-faith Christmas

It’s almost the end of term here in Sheffield and that means one thing – it’s almost Christmas! For me, Christmas is synonymous with German markets, mulled wine and fluffy coats. Christmas Eve and Christmas Day are for spending time with my family. As the four of us all live in different parts of England, it’s a wonderful time to be together. Being Catholics we celebrate the birth of Jesus with a sizeable lunch and by opening nice bottles of wine that have been saved for the big day.

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O Christmas tree, how green are your branches?

Winter has most definitely arrived and as the temperatures drop I’m forced to wear two pairs of socks to ensure my toes don’t fall off.

December does, however, have a redeeming feature – Christmas. Although we have to wait until the fourth week to officially celebrate, the first week also has it’s merits. As soon as November turned to December it was decorating week, and we’d excitedly raid the boxes in the attic for the fairy lights and baubles.

With everyone recently becoming increasingly aware of the impact of their activities on the environment, our focus must be turned to the nation’s most treasured holidays. 

After all, what’s more Christmassy than the Christmas tree? But in the age old battle of real versus fake Christmas trees, how do they compare with regards to sustainability?

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