How and why I chose York!

Hey everyone! Well, that’s another term at York done for me here. It’s certainly been busy and hectic, but incredibly rewarding. How have things been going for you?

In this blog, since I’ve been doing a lot more Student Ambassador work in the Department, I thought it might be nice to theme it more broadly on why I chose to come to York in particular. I know I briefly touched on it in this first blog, but I get asked a lot about it on Open Days and Interview Days. So here’s why I really picked to come to York!
RonCookePod1  So in all honesty, while I was at school, I didn’t really know what I wanted to do, up until Year Eight when my Drama teacher at the time suggested I go and look for a Youth Theatre to join to get some more experience in theatre. I did this, and joined the Youth Theatre at the Lawrence Batley Theatre in Huddersfield, and immediately began to have more of an idea on where I wanted to go in life. Along with English, which I’ve always loved, I enjoyed theatre more than any other subject in school, so joining a Youth Theatre was one of the best decisions I made back then.

The years flew by, and my love for theatre and performance grew; I become more increasingly interested in it as a performance medium, and fascinated with the amount of detail and theory that was behind it. I just wasn’t bothered about subjects like Chemistry or Geography; theatre was much more interesting for me. I took it at GCSE and then went on to do it at A Level. At the same time as starting my A Levels, I began to look at the idea of going to University – at the time, it pretty much seemed like the done thing to do. I’d had it in the back of my mind for years anyway, so now, when I was starting my A Levels, it was a good time to look and have something to work towards.

The bridge over the River Foss in town.
The bridge over the River Foss in town.

I won’t go through all of my choices, since this blog is mainly about York as a University etc., but I’ll tell you my second choice: Edge Hill University , which is based in Ormskirk, not too far from Liverpool. I went to look at Drama and Creative Writing there, and at first, I was very impressed. The University was (and still is, according to friends of mine that went to study there!) one of the most beautiful I’d seen. Nestled in a lovely campus covered in vibrant greenery and flora, and interwoven with sharp and modern architecture, I fell in love with it as soon as I stepped foot on the grounds.

The second time I visited, I found that I wanted to study just their Drama degree alone rather than do a joint degree. I soon realised, however, that the Drama degree there wasn’t much different to other ones I’d seen advertised online (and visited later on at other Universities). I wanted to do acting, directing and scriptwriting at university more than anything else, but those modules at Edge Hill weren’t guaranteed to run, which led me to look for other universities that would guarantee them to run.

The Black Box during this term's rehearsals for Comedy: Performance Styles and Traditions!
The Black Box during this term’s rehearsals for Comedy: Performance Styles and Traditions!

After much searching online, I came across Writing, Directing and Performance at York, drawn in by its unusual title in a sea of degrees that all sounded the same. It was when I came to York on that first open day that I knew straight away why I wanted to come here. It was mainly for the course, but as we explored the University, a plethora of other reasons opened up too!

Using cameras during the Acting for Theatre, Film and Television Directors Module!
Using cameras during the Acting for Theatre, Film and Television Directors Module!

Even on an open day, the University’s supportive atmosphere shone through. The teaching staff, who you may have read about in my previous blog posts, were excellent, rattling off their knowledge of the course without any hesitation, and answering any questions from students or parents with ease and clarity. This theme continued throughout the rest of the University; we popped into the JB Morrell Library to have a look around, and staff there kindly offered to show us the building and tell us all about the brilliant academic support they offered to students. It was these reasons, combined with the real beauty of both campuses (perhaps Hes East more so than Hes West!) that made me want to come to York.

Almost three years since I stepped foot here, during which time I went through A Levels and have studied here for a year, and I still feel the same! It wasn’t as if the University was putting on some massive show to try and get students to come and study here – they were honest about everything they did, and that alone inspired me to study at York. I spent a lot of time looking around Universities until I found what I personally thought was the perfect one. The accommodation was great, the course was what I wanted and the University’s atmosphere was warm and welcoming. I’ve never regretted my decision to come and study at York, and think it’s the best decision I’ve ever made!

Blue skies over Hes East this term!
Blue skies over Hes East this term!


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I'm a second year Writing, Directing and Performance student here at York, originally from near Leeds! I'm a Student Ambassador for my Department, one of the Marketing Ambassadors and a Writing Ambassador for the York Alumni Association. I also write reviews for a London-based theatre website and play guitar!