Hi there! My name is Sophie and I’m an undergraduate student studying English and Related Literature at York. I hope you liked my postcard welcoming you to the Department! Here are just a few of the things to look forward to when studying at York…
World- class teaching and facilities
Choosing to study English and Related Literature at York is easily one of the best decisions you’ll ever make. The Department boasts a wide range of scholars who lead the way in their respective fields. Their thoughtful and innovative research sometimes ends up on your reading list for the week! Nowhere else would you be in better hands.
When I was applying to university, one of the most important things to me was having access to world-class teaching and facilities. I wanted to be challenged in all the right ways! So, if I ended up feeling like a wrung-out dish cloth after a few weeks, so much the better! It meant my brain had enjoyed a good workout, which I knew I’d benefit from later. Alongside stimulating class discussions, you’ll have access to Royal Literary Fund Fellows. This is an opportunity to book one-to-one appointments with published authors to improve your own writing. There are also regular lectures, poetry readings and conferences with exciting contemporary voices. Don’t forget the incredibly cosy F. R. Leavis Room specifically for English students! It houses all the essentials to make a cup of tea whilst you smash out your end of term essay.
York has everything you need to thrive in your studies, and plenty of opportunities to nurture your creative talent. Last year, I won the Ruth Selina Poetry Prize for my creative work. This is just one example of a variety of competitions the department holds each year for its students.
It’s not all about academic study! Societies are an important part of your university experience. As an English student, there are plenty of subject-specific societies to keep an eye out for. For example, LitSoc holds themed book club meetings every week, and are famed for their “Poetry and Pints” evenings held in the city centre’s homely pubs. Inklings is another great society for any budding young author. There’s a different literary focus every week, encouraging you to work on your creative writing skills and experiment with your style.
Finally, writing for Nouse, the student newspaper and the University’s oldest society, is a brilliant addition to any English student’s portfolio. I’m a contributor myself and all you need to do is think of a topic you’re passionate about. It could be anything from the latest vegan recipes to the most recent instalment of your favourite Netflix series. Once you’ve got the permission of the relevant editor, you’re good to go.
As well as the beautiful campus and the many gorgeous bookshops, the main reason to choose York is the incredible staff. Your supervisor will bend over backwards to make sure you’re comfortable as you adjust to university life. They’ll be your first port of call for the whole three years you’re at York. Every member of staff has office hours each week. Here, you can sign up for an appointment to discuss potential essay ideas or a piece of criticism you’re struggling with. You can even just stop by for a general chat about an interesting book you’ve read.
Professor Helen Smith, our Head of Department, is so approachable and will do everything in her power to make you feel at ease. Every member of staff wants you to reach your full potential whilst you’re with us. Above all, it’s about having fun exploring, developing, and experimenting with your literary voice.
We look forward to seeing you at York in September!