Moving from London, an area of so much diversity and multiculturalism, to York felt very different to what I’ve ever known. I needn’t have worried though, it was so easy to settle in.
A little bit about me
Hi! I’m Ciya, a second year Politics and International Relations student from Halifax College. I grew up in Hounslow, West London, and have always been to predominantly multicultural schools.
While I always knew that I wanted to always go to university, I wasn’t sure where. Upon discovering York via UCAS I was drawn in by its prestigious status and history. However, picking a university and applying was quite challenging, especially with the distance from my home in London. But I went for the best module options for the interests I had and chose what I wanted to study.
When I chose York I remember closely looking into the colleges that were available. I knew this would be important, it was going to be my home for a year. I’d looked all over the university website, UCAS, The Student Room and even asked students at the uni for their reviews. I then settled on Vanbrugh! Right in the heart of Campus West, home to its own bar and dining hall. However, when the allocation email came in I was placed in Halifax College. Whilst it was probably my third or fourth choice I decided to embrace it. I signed up to all the Facebook Freshers’ pages and began finding my flatmates online.
Moving to York
Move-in day was nerve-wracking! I had planned my outfit several times and really couldn’t wait to meet everyone. I just hoped we would all get along okay. Two minutes after opening the flat door I was greeted by my lovely neighbour Daisy asking how I was doing and if I’d like to come out to the block party that evening. It was such a relief that it was all in my head, there was nothing to be worried about at all. That evening, as we all got together in the kitchen, I met six lovely girls who were in the same boat as me. All doing different courses, from different places around the world: Dubai, the Cayman Islands, Hull, Hertfordshire. I quickly realised we all had come from different places and that was not something to fear about York, but to embrace with each other.
During the course of Freshers’ Week I met up with people from all colleges. It was so easy to make friends. Since coming to university I’ve been involved in Hindu Society, BritAsian Society, African Caribbean Society, Halifax Netball, Politics Society, the YUSU BAME Network and I was involved in the Halifax College Student Association as their BAME Officer.
Now I’m in my second year I am still thoroughly enjoying my uni experience! While things haven’t been completely normal in terms of the restrictions because of Covid-19, I have been able to explore so much more of the city this year. I’ve found my favourite vegan restaurant in town, been on walks to campus almost everyday, and attended covid-secure netball socials at The Forest (a new outdoor bar on campus). I’m grateful that even through a lot of the pandemic’s setbacks I have been able to make the most of what I have around me and I can’t wait to make the most of my third year in September!