Cal Combined Honours BA Honours

Course dates: 2008 - 2012

Choosing Newcastle

I chose Newcastle because it was far enough away from home to move out, but close enough to still get back easily. I also really liked the city: the work-play balance is really great. You get the benefits of a great university, and a great social life.

Studying in Newcastle

I love my course. I'm President of the Combined Honours Society and it's great that the social side links right into the academic. Everyone is really cool and down to earth. There's also plenty of freedom to pick exactly what you want to do with Combined Honours - I get to pick all the modules I'm interested in.

What surprised me most was just how much fun you can have every day. I expected university to be like a harder version of boarding school or doing A-Levels away from home.

In regards to projects, I'm doing some research on Newcastle during the Civil War for my dissertation - It's been fascinating spending time in the archives of the Great North Museum and reading some hand written manuscripts that are over 400 years old. It's also great preparation for my MPhil degree after I finish my BA.

I took a placement year - It was the best decision of my life. I went away and worked as a Community Manager at a world-class games studio in Cambridge. They build online games like RuneScape and Transformers - It was so great to be a part of that and have it count towards my degree. Essentially I was being paid to do something I loved and get a qualification out of it at the end. Win, win.

Living in Newcastle

It's amazing. Great city, great nightlife, plenty to do for everyone. It's also nice and small so everything is easy to get to on foot.

I live on the Quayside, right on the river - It's really cool. I like walking up through the city centre every day to and from uni. It's a really nice walk up Grey Street and past all the old Georgian buildings in the city centre.

Accommodation tips - If you want an en-suite, you'll be living further away from the city centre and it'll be a much quieter hall. If you don't mind sharing bathrooms and like to party, the city centre halls are for you. Also, make the most of the special offers in supermarkets!

Socialising at Newcastle

I'm usually on campus working or in the library reading. In my spare time I go out to the movies, go ice skating or just generally hang around with friends. The student's union is always a great place to just chill out when you've got some free time.

Best thing about Newcastle

The work-play balance. I don't think any other university gives you such a well rounded life experience. University is about academic success, but it's also about growing as a person and experiencing life - Newcastle facilitates and enables this better than anywhere else.