10 Reasons to Choose UEA

The UCAS deadline for applying to university has been and gone…which means you now have to wait patiently for offers and start thinking about what university you want to attend in September. So without further ado, I present to you: 10 reasons to choose UEA

1.Our Campus – If the only experience you have of UEA is an open day in the rain, you might not believe me here, but I promise you – you will love campus. Why not check out my post about the lake to see a few snaps of how stunning the broad is. When I visited UEA, I didn’t like the Ziggarats, but now I’m prepared to defend their unique beauty to anyone who dares suggest they look bad – love them or hate them, they’re iconic.

2. Snapchat filters – just putting this out there, UEA has some pretty great snapchat geofilters. If you come to UEA, be sure to send numerous snaps all with a lovely ‘oh UEA is wonderful’ filter to your friends at other universities to make sure they know what they’re missing.

3. Student Satisfaction – Last year UEA came joint third in mainstream university student satisfaction in the National Student Survey. It’s also the only English mainstream university to achieve a top-five ranking every year since the survey began in 2005. Not bad.

4. Norwich/Norfolk – Norfolk is a beautiful (and often overlooked) part of the UK. Norwich itself is a great city, with so much to do and see. I love it so much that I can’t do justice to it here, but check out my posts on Great Yarmouth, Cromer, Blickling Hall, exploring Norwich and a day in Norwich for a lil’ taster of the stuff you can get up to here.

5. Rabbits – there’s a whole lotta rabbits around campus. They’re sure to brighten up your day on your way to a lecture, and ‘The UEA Rabbit’ has it’s own twitter account. There’s also rumours that if you manage to catch a rabbit and bring it to the bar, you’ll get a free drink, but after you’ve tried chasing a rabbit (everyone has, let’s be honest) you’ll realise it’s not so easy.

6. Sainsburys Centre – In a mostly concrete campus, the Sainsburys Centre for Visual Arts really stands out. Despite being designed at the same time as the Ziggarats, it looks really futuristic – hence why it’s also famous for being used as Avengers HQ in the Avengers films! If you’re into art, it’s a lovely place to spend the afternoon, or if, like me, you’re more into food, the cafe there does some great things and you get a lovely view out of the glass side.

7. Music – UEA and Norwich has a great reputation for live music and gigs. The LCR on campus hosts all sorts of great musicians and groups, and Norwich has lots of amazing venues like the Waterfront, Norwich Arts Centre and smaller independent places. UEA also has some great music societies and organisations that put on events and concerts through the year. Check out my post on music in Norwich and the UEA Choir’s Christmas Carol Concert to find out a bit more.

8. Societies/opportunities – UEA has over 200 student clubs and societies to choose from so there’ll definitely be at least one thing you want to get involved in. Societies brings loads of really cool opportunities, like getting involved in student radio or news, trips abroad and a chance to make some great friends. Outside of societies, UEA has loads of other amazing opportunities – for example, getting a job as a student ambassador gave me opportunities like running this blog, being on the radio and mentoring at a local school. Also don’t forget events like Pimp My Barrow in the summer, which is unique to UEA.

9. Atmosphere – this is hard to explain, but I think UEA just has a really nice atmosphere on campus. When I applied to university, I applied to quite a range of universities, some of which felt like they had quite intimidating reputations. UEA seems to have escaped this, because it feels so friendly. In my university open day experiences, UEA stood out as a university where I felt I could imagine myself enjoying living there. I wasn’t wrong, and I think this friendly atmosphere is part of why UEA ranks so highly for student satisfaction.

10. Sportspark – into sports? Well look no further. UEA is home to the Sportspark, currently the biggest indoor sports centre in Britain. It’s got a climbing wall and an Olympic-sized swimming pool and I’m pretty sure it will cater for any sport you could ever wish to play at university.

So there you have it, 10 reasons to choose UEA. I hope this has been helpful for any of you currently trying to choose a university! If you’re a UEA student and you have any other favourite parts about the uni, why not leave them in the comments below?

The Lake

Last weekend brought beautiful weather here at UEA. With such amazing weather and revision to avoid, I’ve spent a lot of time down by the lake on campus. The UEA lake is hands down my favourite part of campus, and yet before I arrived here I didn’t really realise it existed! I’d heard the lake mentioned a few times at open days/applicant days and I knew it was out there somewhere, but I had no idea how big the lake was or how beautiful and peaceful it is. I thought I’d gather together some of my favourite pictures I’ve taken of the lake over my time at uni so far to give you a little taste of how nice it is if you don’t know much about it…

lake

The lake is behind the main campus buildings, across the open grassy area in front of the Ziggurats. It’s pretty massive and you can walk all the way around it for the best views of the university. If you’re into running it’s a great route for your morning jog, but for the rest of us there are benches dotted around the edges of the lake so you can take a minute to sit down and enjoy the view.

As well as walking around the lake itself, you can also cross the bridge to ‘butterfly meadow’ (although I have to say I didn’t see any butterflies when I visited!), or at the other end there’s a boardwalk which takes you along the River Yare. There’s also a wildlife trail you can follow around the lake and the Yare Valley if you have some spare time to kill.

To the side of the lake there’s even a small horse and donkey sanctuary where you can meet some friendly ponies. Unfortunately I’ve heard the sanctuary is closing so it might be too late to see the horses…you’ll have to make do with the swans on the lake instead! If swans aren’t enough for you, there are always plenty of dogs being walked around the lake (part of the reason for my love of lake walks)…

It’s always so peaceful by the lake, and it’s nice to be able to get away from the busyness of campus for a while. I love the fact that while there’s always so much going on in the centre of campus, you can slip away easily and sit by the lake where it’s quiet and relaxing. Lake walks are the perfect revision break or lazy afternoon activity. If you’re coming to visit UEA and you have some spare time, take a trip around the lake – you won’t regret it!

sunset

Accommodation at UEA

One of the biggest changes starting university will bring is that many people choose to move out of home and live at university. It goes without saying then that where you’ll be living for your first year is a pretty big deal, so I thought I’d write about some of the accommodation that UEA offers, and my experience of university accommodation.

UEA has a pretty big range of accommodation (for a full list and price breakdown check out the accommodation page on the website), but the main two choices for living on campus are en-suite accommodation or shared showers and toilets in the Ziggurats. Both types of accommodation are great, so it’s really up to you based on what you feel most comfortable with. I’d recommend visiting UEA on an applicant day where you’ll get to see inside the accommodation and can decide which you’d prefer.

Both types of accommodation have their advantages. If you opt for a room in the iconic Ziggurats, you’ll get an amazing view across the lake – one of the best views on campus. Sharing a bathroom also means it’s cheaper than en-suite which is definitely something to consider.

Personally, I went for en-suite accommodation, mainly because of the convenience of having my own bathroom, although I have to say I am very jealous of the views my friends in the Ziggurats get! I’ve really loved my room at UEA, it’s very bright and a good size, and living on campus has been so practical and enjoyable.

My room comes with a desk area, wardrobe, shelves and chest of drawers. There’s also a big pin board, which I think is probably intended for academic stuff, but I’ve covered it with pictures, cards and the obligatory Dominos pizza voucher leaflet. On my walls I’ve got a Friends poster which I bought from the poster sale during freshers week, and I have lots of photos of friends from back home and memories from the summer. Printing pictures is a really great way to brighten up your uni room and make it feel a bit more homely. I also have a couple of small pot plants on my windowsill, which have done very well to survive for this long in the year because they haven’t had much water! I bought these from home, but in freshers week there was a big plant sale, so you can buy some greenery for your room then.

Living on campus has been great, there’s a really nice student-y atmosphere, and it’s been so good knowing the furthest I’ll have to walk to get anywhere on campus is 10 minutes! Next year I’ll be living in student housing in Norwich, which is really exciting, although I’ll definitely miss my lovely little uni room!