I realise this may seem a tad premature considering I’m only a second year and will be returning to Sheffield in September (apologies to those graduating), but summer is still a fairly long stretch of time to be away. Here’s a list of my top five things that I’ll miss about Sheffield whilst I’m home for the holidays, which was very tricky to narrow down:
1) The People– I’ve met countless incredible people during my two years here, ranging from flatmates to course friends to those who I’ve met through societies, ambassador work and mentoring. Everyone in Sheffield has been really friendly, even people I’ve never met before have been super helpful on the few occasions I’ve become lost and my phone hasn’t been able to cope with Google maps! It’s a bit soppy and clichéd, but my friends from Sheffield are what I’ll miss most over summer.
2) The Scenery-Sheffield is a beautiful city and is the opposite to the mass of concrete I envisaged before visiting on an open day. There are gorgeous green spaces such as Endcliffe Park, the Botanical Gardens (which are both a short stroll from Endcliffe if you’ve secured a spot there in halls) and you can even go exploring in the Peaks by bus for just a £1 each way with your student card! Closer to campus Western Park and Crookes Valley Park are picturesque places to venture for a picnic on your lunch break if the weather’s being kind.
3) Volunteering-Over the past two years I’ve participated in a number of volunteering opportunities such as the mentoring scheme, English in the City where I helped out with an A Level English Literature class, an African Singing workshop in a primary school with SingSoc and the 24 Hour Inspire. I’ve enjoyed all of these activities immensely and they’ve helped me develop confidence as well as improving my time management and presentation skills.
4) Opportunities-Thought this was a vague enough category to encompass how our Students’ Union provides an enormous variety of opportunities to get involved in, so there’s always something to do in your free time! Whether it’s a music, sport, academic or pretty much any other type of society you’re interested in, or if you fancy trying out something new or visiting somewhere you’ve never been before with the Give it a Go programme, or just catching a film at student friendly prices at Film Unit, the SU has you covered. I already miss SingSoc and popping into the media hub for Forge Press. My village at home doesn’t have quite as much to offer!
5) Lectures-Despite grumbling about getting up for 9am’s (or more accurately anything before midday), I’ve enjoyed the content of my course this year. Lectures have been really useful, especially for shedding light on some of the rather dense literary theory we’ve tackled this year such as works by Derrida and Kristeva, which perplexed me upon the first read. I’m looking forward to resuming lectures in the Autumn semester and seeing what third year will bring, although I doubt anything will receive as much attention from the media as Sam Ladkin’s ‘The Art of Masturbation’ lecture!
I’ll be staying in Sheffield for a few more weeks after term ends so am not disappearing just yet, as well as returning for Tramlines at the end of July. I’m really looking forward to being free from exam stress and catching up with my family and friends from home, but Sheffield will still be missed. Hope everyone has an amazing summer and good luck to those graduating!