To be perfectly honest, choosing where to study was a really tough call, and it was only after I started exploring the city and everything the University had to offer that I fell in love with it. If York is calling your name, like it was calling mine, here are 10 things you can look forward to:
1. Cold winter mornings
A sunrise in York is one thing not to miss. The air is crisp, the birds are singing, and the sun’s reflection in the river bathes the city in a warm glow. No matter how rubbish you think your day might be, watching the sun rise on a crisp, winters day is bound to change your mood. And if running floats your boat, I highly recommend a morning run along the river!
2. Sótano on a Saturday night
This place is a hidden gem, and it’s amazing. This underground Spanish bar serves the best drinks and tapas in the city, in my opinion. It’s perfect on a Saturday night, preferably after waking up unacceptably late and eating pancakes mid-afternoon.
3. Burritos in V-Bar after one too many lectures
After launching these beauties a few months ago on-campus V-Bar’s delicious burritos have gained a lot of attention. One afternoon, I cracked, and I have finally come to understand what the hype was about. Especially after a long morning of lectures, seminars or even reading. Literally food for thought.
4. Random student societies
Yes, every university has societies. But York has ‘proportionally the highest number of clubs and societies per student’ (according to this). That’s over 170 societies we’re talking about here. And man, are the members dedicated and hard working! I personally attend YogaSoc’s yoga classes, go to the occasional vegan tasting event and make-up artistry workshop. And the drawing class was fun, too. I’m trying pottery next!
5. The mystery of timetable location-planning
No, you will not attend every Economics lecture in Alcuin College, even though that’s where the department is officially registered. Instead, your timetable will sometimes get you running from the Psychology to Politics buildings in the space of 5 minutes, and sometimes it will allow you to remain seated in Derwent College for a whole three hours; so you are either sprinting across campus or have enough time to grab a coffee from The Courtyard cafe. But hey, isn’t variety the spice of life?!
6. The locals and the not-so-locals
The University of York is incredibly diverse in its staff and student population. This has given me the amazing opportunity to meet people from all over the world and chat to them about their lifestyles back home, which has been very instructive and has given me major, major wanderlust. Learning really does come in all forms.
7. The amazing careers service
My school never had a careers service, and when I arrived in York, my career path was essentially non-existent. I’ve consulted with the Careers advisor for our department on multiple occasions, for both the CV clinic and more abstract matters about my future. There is so much support and lots of opportunities available, whatever your interests are.
8. The perks of being a student
Wherever you are, being a student is pretty rad: discounts, special events and lots of free time, it’s basically the ideal life. What I like most about York is the availability of student discounts in local, independent businesses, which massively expand your repertoire of places to visit and venues to attend. From hairdressers to art galleries, York will no doubt turn you into a cultured and exciting individual!
9. All the fun
Speaking of which, York has so many fun events going on, and all year round. Spooky haunted pubs, ghost tours and the cat trail are a few examples of what to do on a Sunday afternoon. Over Christmas, the centre of town is taken over by food & drink merchants, gift stalls and a roasted chestnut cart. The summer sees local food festivals and markets pop up, too. There really is no time for boredom – and all this fun is only a short bus journey from campus!
I know how trivial this seems when picking a university – at least it was for me. I was moving countries, and all I was worried about was getting there in the first place. But, what about going home? Or anywhere else, for that matter? In fact, York is pretty perfect in terms of accessibility. It’s only a direct train journey away from London and Edinburgh, a 1-hour train journey from Manchester airport and a short drive from the coast and the Yorkshire Moors. In other words, it’s extremely easy to go home, fly abroad, or spend a day out in the countryside!
Any questions? Drop me a comment below!