How to survive university

I thought for my first post of the new year I would look at how to survive university. Students all around the country are currently looking at what university they should go to and sending in their applications. So let’s give them a heads up! 

 Make friends.

Everyone makes friends so easily at uni, its the atmosphere. However if you sit in your room, not talking to any one and counting down the days you can go back to family or your other half, your unlikley to do very well. Your friends will help you out when your stressed with work, need advice and take you out when you want to be boring.

Be organized.

The worst thing would be if you realized you 5,000 word essay was due in tomorrow, or worse last week. Keep a diary, where you have written all you deadlines, presentations, and exams. I missed one of mine in the first year due to remembering it wrong.

 Go out. 

I am not a huge night clubber, I would prefer to have good night in with a bottle of vodka and a group of friends. I think in the first year you need to go on nights out, because half of my memories are from funny things that happen on nights out.

 Learn how to reference. 

One of the things that I think EVERY student needs to learn as soon as possible, is how to reference. In my house I am the Queen of referencing and my housemates are always asking me advice. However when I was in my first year, I failed loads of my assignments because I didnt reference properly. Does your university do Harvard Referencing?

Don’t forget the people at home.

For me this is one of the biggest mistakes you can make, your friends from school, college or wherever should stay your friends when your at university and unfortunately it is far too easy to leave them behind.

 Don’t Stress. 

As long as your putting effort into your course work, making friends and having fun then you are doing uni right. Don’t worry too much about how high your grades are, in your first year it really doesn’t matter.

Lauren. x

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It’s because my parents are divorced!

I drive my boyfriend crazy when  I talk about how divorce can affect children as they grown older. I know that it can affect me, my thoughts on relationship and my own self-confidence have been blamed on my parents divorce. In fact I even wrote an feature article about it earlier this year (I will post it here if I can find it!).

However as I have been looking around the internet getting ready to start my dissertation next year, I found an article about broken families and writing your dissertation.

The article said that the majority of university students use the christmas holiday as the time to start writing their dissertation, this is not the first time sensible students start working on it though. However the christmas stress that being in a blended family can put on you can make working on your dissertation even more difficult.

Is this really fair though? Maybe my boyfriend is right, maybe we need to stop blaming our parents failed relationship. After all although my sisters and brother are not biological they don’t make my life bad, they are great. My step mum isn’t my mother but she will help out whenever she can and my stepdad is always doing things to help me.

Surely there are a number of worse situations to be in. What if your parents are always arguing because they stayed together for you, what if there is a crying baby in the house or a younger brother who loves to play his music at 100 decibels. It is always going to be hard to write your dissertation, not everyone can do it. Thats why its so good to have. But we need to grow up and take responsibility. You choose to write your dissertation, it’s your responsibility to get it done.

We all need to stop holding our parents accountable for every bad thing in our life. If my parents were still married would I really have a disney princess perfect life where nothing goes wrong? No!

Hope your getting ready for Easter!

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p.s Split the Bills code: LE959

Getting into uni: virtual interview

Well, we are getting to the stage of the year when students have applied to universities and are starting to get ready for interviews. So I thought I would write a blog post for the future University students, all about interviews for university. This will be a series of blog posts, so I hope it will cover the type of interview you have.

Virtual Interview.

I am starting with a virtual interview as this is one of the ones I had to do to apply to my backup university. When I was looking around to find out what to do I found there were hardly any information on it, so I felt this was important.

What the Heck is it?

This is the normal response to hearing about a Virtual interview however it is actually very simple. Your chosen university will send you a list of questions, the idea is that you record the answers to these questions and send the video back to the university admissions office.

What courses use this?

In my case this was used for a media related degree and I think that this is the most common use for this type of interview. However I think that it could also be used in Drama and Dance related degrees. The idea is that you will show your skills and confidence in front of the camera as well, in the case of media, your skills at editing together the footage.

My Key Tips

  • Start thinking of your answers as soon as you receive the questions.
  • Record in front of a blank background. A patterned background will distract from what you are saying.
  • It is still an interview- Look presentable.
  • Send it in recorded delivery and make sure there is more than enough time to get there.
  • Get a friend/ family member to help record it.
  • Make sure you edit them as professionally as possible, including the questions so they know what your answering.
  • Show off your personality.

I am not sure if this is something I should continue, but I hope it helped some people. Back to normal posts later this week.

P.s. My friend Jess said that I only update my blog late at night, so I tried to be a little earlier!

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Food: Hangover one-pot breakfast

ImageBloody hell! It’s February already, where is this year going? I haven’t managed to upload on here as much as I want to,  but my boyfriends friends are round this weekend so I am planning on writing a load of blog posts.

I thought I would write another recipe blog post, so this is a hangover breakfast special. I found a recipe for this on pintrest and I have adapted it for my own flavors. Hope you enjoy!

Ingredients

Potatoes- about 2 per person for a filling meal.

Onion- 1

Egg- 1 per person

Peas- as much as you want.

Bacon- a couple rashers

Directions

  1. The first thing you need to do is chop your potatoes, small bite sized are the best with the skin still on, makes them crispy. Once they are chopped you need to put them in a bowl of cold water, this is meant to make them more crispy.
  2. While your potatoes are soaking, start on your bacon. You need to go to chop them into small-ish pieces, make sure you remove the fat, as it is super unhealthy anyway. Fry them off until they are crispy.
  3. You should add your onion and peas to the bacon until they are cooked. Then place them in a bowl.
  4. You can now cook your potatoes, add them into the frying pan on a medium to low setting with plenty of oil. You want to cook them slowly and oily for them to crisp up.
  5. Once the potatoes are cooked add the bacon and veg back into the pan and mix together, make a little well in the middle of the pan and crack an egg. Once the egg is cooked you are ready to plate up. Your egg will turn into a little bit of an omelet with some of the veg and potatoes in it.

The Stodgy potatoes will soak up alcohol nicely, the veg kick in the vitamins and well we all know that bacon is god’s gift to hangovers.

Hope your hangover enjoys this meal.

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New home: Got the house

Well the snow has certainly been attacking little old Britain over the last week. I hope you are all safe and sound and haven’t bruised your bum too much by falling over.

I thought I would use today to add another part to my finding a new house blog series. So here we go, hope you enjoy.

Once you have found your house!

  1. who’s got that room?

In most university houses there is a mixture of rooms, some are big, some are small and some are in the way of everyone! Deciding who gets what rooms tends to be one of the first problems you will come across within your new house.

If you are very lucky, everyone will just end up deciding on a room and there will be no problem. However if you can’t decide there are a number of ways to decide.

Draw Straws.

One of the ways to decide is to draw straws for each of the rooms, however you need to make sure everyone is happy with the chance they could get the smallest room. My step sister had to draw straws and then the person with the smallest room then decided she could only deal with the largest one!

Money talks!

The second idea I have heard on people using is sorting it out money-wise. The person with the biggest room will pay the most rent while the person with the smallest room pays the least. This doesn’t take into account the idea of a room downstairs or next to a noisy bathroom.

2.Utilities

Sorting out utilities can be confusing, the best idea is to get everyone in the house to try and find some good deals. Once you have decided who you want to go with work out a good time to get things installed. Internet will need to be installed even if  it is a really old house and the old tenants used the same provider.

3. How to pay

You will obviously need to pay for your bills. One way to do this is having it coming out of one account and getting the other flatmates to pay. However this can get confusing and missed payments can easily occur. I feel the best idea is to use an external company. Split the bills is a company that deals with your bills for you, the company takes the estimated money for the bills out of you account and will refund any money that  was not spent on your bills.

4. Agreeing on everything

One of the things that I had a problem with in my house was mis-communications. Make sure that everyone is 100% on board before you make any decisions. If you have any problems then you should make sure you speak up, if you say something after your flatmates have taken action then they will get annoyed and possibly have to deal with your problems themselves.

5.Any Extras

If you can work out any extras you will need to buy as a house, Cleaning things such as a broom, vacuum cleaner and washing sponges are best to buy as a house if you are all going to use them.

Now all you have to do is look forward to moving in! Start thinking about how you will decorate your room.

UPDATE! I have managed to get a discount code for Split the Bills. If you use the code ‘LE959’ you will get your first months broadband free! Enjoy!Love lauren blog sign off

Tv show: is it offensive?

James Corden and Jack Whithall enjoying a glass of wine

It is only a show!

The original plan for this blog post was that I would do a review of the first term this year as part of my on-going review posts. However when searching through the online newspapers today I was shocked by one story and felt I had to write about it. [The review will be up next week!]

I am slightly ashamed as a journalism student to start off this post by saying; I was looking through the Daily Mail website [Sorry lecturers] and was shocked to see an article written about how Jack Whitehall is being recommended to step down from presenting a prize at the National Television Awards after a number of complaints about his actions on the TV show ‘Big fat quiz of the year’ which was shown on channel 4.

For those of you who are not familiar with the show, it is a quiz show featuring a number of comedians and familiar on screen faces, they are asked a number of questions about stories from throughout the year.  I find that it is an amusing end to the year and enjoy being reminded of a number of the highlights throughout the year. This years panelists included: Jack Whitehall, James Corden, Russell Howard, Jonathan Ross, Richard Ayoade, Gabby Logan, and  was hosted by Jimmy Carr.

Although it is a quiz show the men took a much more light hearted approach to the show, often choosing to write down a comedic answer rather than the correct one. Gabby Logan seemed to take the show rather seriously and answered pretty much all questions correctly. I have to be honest here that although the technical object of the show is to get to questions write, I feel this show is more of a comedic show than a quiz so without Richard Ayoade as part of her team she would come across somewhat dull.

Roughly half way through the show which lasted over an hour and a half. James and Jack received an ordered pizza and pulled out a bottle of wine with two glasses from under their desk, which they happily tucked into. Most of the complaints which have been received by both OFCOM and Channel 4, said that they felt the show contained some material that was too controversial to be shown at 9 O’Clock during the Christmas period, as a number of children were still awake to see it.

There are a number of rules set out for broadcasting show on television, one rule, which as far as I know is very well known, is that the 9 O’Clock watershed. After 9 O’Clock you can  air a show which contains adult material and possible sexual explicit content. The idea is that by 9 O’Clock children are likely to be asleep so will not view the material. To me this means if you don’t want your children to see this type of material, you should not allow them to watch tv after 9. Even if its the holidays, why not grab a board game if your worried about your child.

I think we can all agree that over the past couple of years a number of the talent involved in this quiz have been known to make comments that have been thought to be offensive. Jimmy Carr often comes out with rather risqué jokes and Jonathan Ross were recently fired from the BBC after his offensive phone call with Russell Brand. [if you don’t know look it up] Knowing that these characters were involved in this show, I would imagine easily offended people would think that it is possibly not what they would enjoy.

Although a lot of people are blaming the comedians for the tone of the show and created sexualized jokes. One of the questions of the show was what was the unfortunate hashtag used in Susan Boyal ‘s Album release. The answer was Susanalbumparty, it was obviously meant to be Susan Album Party but looks like Su’s anal bum party. surely any one faced with this answer would have to make a joke.

I honestly feel that people need to stop being so sensitive! Their comedians, let them make jokes. They are the sort of jokes I would hear down the pub, it’s not like this is anything new.

What do you think? Did they go too far? Are we living in an overly sensitive world?

Daily Nuggets

– I am watching a Criminal Minds marathon

– I have been so busy this week, going to London and spending new year with my boyfriend.

– I have so much work to do before going back to uni.

– IT’S FRIDAY!

My New Year Wishes

Can you believe that the new year is here already? I decided that I would start the new year by blogging about what I wish to happen in the new year?

My Love Life

My boyfriend and I have been together for over a year now and I have never felt happier. However this year Chris will be going away to do his placement year, he is currently applying and some of the places he has looked at are abroad. So the next year could have us facing some new challenges.

My love life wish- I hope that Chris and I will manage to get through the next year even if he is studying abroad, after all I hear cheap holiday.

My Professional Life

As you know I am at University, however in the summer holidays I am hoping to get a job within Public Relations. I am starting to look at companies now so I hoping I will find somewhere. I will also be doing Work Experience during the summer in Journalism as I need to do some for my course. By the end of 2013 I will also be having to look at jobs for after university. Ahhhh, thats scary.

My professional wish- to get a good job so I am not so worried about finishing university.

My University Wish

I have been doing really well this year at university. So far I have managed to do really well in my coursework this year, I am hoping that I will continue this throughout the next year, and come out of uni with the best grade possible.

My Uni Wish- To carry on getting the best grades possible.

My Blogging Wish

2012 was the year that started Uni Confessions and I have become so proud of this little blog. We only began in July and we have already turned into something that has become an amazing adventure. I can only hope that the excitement of the blog can thrive and continue.

My Blogging Wish- I hope for this blog to continue to grow, you will see some changes over the next year as I try to improve the blog. I would welcome your views on the blog and I hope you all know you can contact me whenever.

So those are my wishes for 2013. What are your wishes for the next year?

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