Wednesday, 18 December 2013

Greetings from Amsterdam and Christmas holiday warning.

Hello again my beautiful people, how are you all? Good, I’m glad. I myself are shattered to b honest. I got back from a long weekend in Amsterdam last night and now spending my day working. Needless to say, I am tired.

Amsterdam though was really cool, the people, the city, the drinks.  It is quite amazing how much Amsterdam as a city differs from that of London. For example, there roads are split into three, one for bikes, one for trams and buses and the other for cars. Bike is by far the most common form of transport and pretty much every single person has one. It’s the easiest and most convenient  way to get around the city. If only London adopted a Dutch attitude to cycling, it would make my life easier and not to mention safer! I and my friends did go to the Anne Frank house, which was very interesting and moving, very surreal as well. We also went to the sex museum which again was interesting but also very, very strange. We all also ate a lot of cake and drank a lot of coffee.

I am quite happy to be home though; my European travels have worn me out. However it is slightly depressing that now I am home I have to work and I still have a 1500 word assignment to do! How depressing, eh? It gets even worse; I still have the majority of my Christmas shopping to do… That I am sure will not be very pleasant nor fun and somewhat quite expensive.

With all of my blog entry’s, I always like to have a useful message, which as of late they haven’t. So Carney’s (yes I did just refer to myself in the third person) useful tip or warning if you take it that way, is o make as much use of the Christmas holidays as possible. Yes it is nice not being at university or school, but make use of the time. While it is always nice to have a lazy day, I am very looking forward to having one on Saturday, it’s also important to be proactive. So perhaps for ever lazy day you have, have a day of work. Or as I like to try to do (and normally fail) is to try and do something every day, whether or not it’s a blog entry like this or replying to email’s, just make sure you do something and not fall into a slum!

And finally, no blog would be complete without a Eric update. He is growing strong and healthy and developing well. He’s tired and stressed as we all are and can’t wait for the university to close for a good few weeks so he can get a nice rest and get some sleep. Hopefully someone will still feed him…

Look below for some pretty photos + Eric.


See you all in 2014, have a fantastic Christmas and a unrememberable New Year!







France and Belgium Battlefield trip!

So I got back from France last night, I spent a few days there and their neighbours Belgium. Despite the hours on the coach it was actually a really good trip. I think the worse part would definitely have to be the singing on the coach, after two minutes it became tiresome and dire, I compensated with putting in my iPod and blocking the world out.

The first day was spent in Belgium and we went to the Mein Gate, followed by the night and two days in France. We visited several memorials and graves, ranging from German cemeteries to British, to French and to Anglo-French cemeteries. We also visited the National French memorial, where over 40,000 people are buried, and an incredible amount of fallen soldiers. It was all an incredible humbling experience and some of the memorials are breath-takingly pretty, however their beauty is bitter sweet given the purpose of them.

We were also able to go the site of the Somme, again that was incredible but we were also able to go into persevered British and German trenches and it was shocking to see how close they actually were to each other!

It was also very interesting, the difference in the memorials and the cemeteries. For example, the difference between French and British cemeteries, the length and the effort the British went too, to honour their dead despite harsh opposition and a troubled economy.

In the night we went for meals, I had some mussels, they were nice. They hotel was also nice and the drinks cheap. I was very happy. Not as happy as when we went to the local French supermarket and I was let loose on the BN’s, Lays and the ridiculously cheap alcohol (it’s the simple things in life).

All in all it was an amazing trip, and one I would recommend. It was organised by the History department, for a reasonable price. It was a complex itinerary and must have been a hell of a trip to plan. However to all of the lectures and staff credit it was a smooth and very slick operation. I would just like to say how grateful I am for them organising this trip and giving me the opportunity to go and to be able to see how amazing and humbling things that I would not be forgetting in a hurry.

Tomorrow I go to Amsterdam! This time with friends, not the university, if you, my glamorous readers can control yourself until my return I shall give you the pleasure of another blog.


Have a good weekend. 







Tuesday, 3 December 2013

Assessments.

So I’ve been pretty snowed down recently, with work, university, more work and trying to have a social life, it’s all been pretty packed!  It’s quite frustrating that all my assignments have all seemed to come at once but that’s just life. It’s even more frustrating that I’m in my second year now so it does all actually count towards my final degree!

But things are going well though! I am looking forward to Christmas, just chilling out, relaxing, not actually doing anything with myself… Should probably start shopping for presents for my family…  Any suggestions for presents for my Mum or Sister please in the comment section below (like seriously, I have no idea!).

But I did go and see the Hunger Games: Catching Fire a couple of days after it came out and it was awesome! It was even better as I saw it at the Sky Superscreen, which is massive! It was sooo cool and the movie was sooo good! And really looking to the next couple of weeks as well, Belgium next week and then Amsterdam not a few days after, should e really good! (Albeit devastating to my bank account, which again might seriously affect the quality of my Christmas presents…).

So as ever in all my blogs I like to offer a bit of useful advice, not that I ever take my own that is.  But I would just like to say in terms of assessments, coursework etc, it’s always better to be on top of things. Don’t be ignorant or ignore the amount of work you have to do, be realistic and force yourself to sit down and do it! The hardest part of it is making yourself start, once you’ve done that it will get easier.

Sooo yeah, that’s pretty much it, will blog again in a couple of weeks with pictures from my travels!!

Bye bye!


P.S. Eric update: Eric is currently alive. 

Thursday, 28 November 2013

What else can a university offer?

Woo! It’s time to get excited for I have wrote another blog…

As ever I like to have a useful message in my blogs (rather than me just rambling), in this one it’s student employment. Employment while studying is extremely important, or at least I think so. It has several benefits, no only does it earn you money it also stops you spending money as well (as you spend your time working). You also get to meet new people, get new opportunities and have a laugh.

There are numerous benefits to working while studying, there are also many more for working within the university/Student’s Union. For example as I work for the university, I get access to new and exciting opportunities. I did a First Aid certificate last year and got paid too! I also do work for my Student’s Union which is good, even better as I get 20% discount on food in the SU and free entry into our night club. Honestly I love life every time I use my staff discount to get food at the SU.


Working while at University also sets you up for later life, in the sense it allows you to gain skills, make contacts and learn things that will make you more employable.

Not to harbour on about the University of Greenwich , but they are really good for that. We have a whole department dedicated to student employment, not only finding them work but helping them prepare for work in terms of practising interviews and checking your CV etc.

So my word of advice is that when you are looking at Universities, look at what else they can offer you in terms of employment in the future and while studying, not just the UCAS points and where the uni is ranked.

Hope that’s helpful!
  
P.S.: Eric update. He got himself into a bit of bother the other day. Sadly his lady plant friend broke Eric’s poor little avocado stone heart. To help Eric through this difficult time we have swapped his water drip for a vodka equivalent.  We hope he makes a full recovery soon.

Tuesday, 12 November 2013

And time keeps ticking on…

It’s funny how the days and weeks just fly by and all merge into one. It’s only by what lectures and what work I have that I’m able to identify the different days.  Lectures drone on and seminars drag on but that’s just how it goes.  It is important while at university to always keep up with the assigned work and reading, to make sure you’re on top of everything, but then that is easier said than done.

I’m looking forward to the next couple of months, next month especially. Not only is it Christmas, which is good as I get a lot of presents.  But then it’s also bad as I have to buy an equal amount of presents to give, which is a lot of stress (especially for my family who are ridiculously fussy/picky).
 
But anyway I’m looking forward to next month as I am going to Belgium with the History department on the battlefield trip that should be good but also slightly more excitingly when I get back two days later I set off to Amsterdam for three nights. I have a feeling that it will be quite messy…

It was my sister’s graduation last week, she also went to Greenwich and is graduating with a First Class degree in Psychology (woo). While this might be fantastic for her, for me it is slightly irritating as I am now expected to match her degree and if I fail to do so I shall be forced to suffer an eternity of mockery and gloating.

But as ever in my blogs I like to have a useful message. In this one it’s finance! I’m the type of student who spends more time in their overdraft than not. So you could argue that it’s quite hypercritical for me of all people to preach, however you also could argue that it puts me in a useful position to give advice…

So my advice, to put it simply is to be aware. Be aware of how much money you have, how much money you are spending and how much money you will need until the next long installment. I’m not going to preach about not wasting your money going out and how you should stick to a very tight budget as I’m not like that nor do I think that actually works. So in short, just be aware, be sensible and then you should enough money to go out and actually buy groceries as well J

Also part time jobs are incredible important while at university. I’ll speak about that next time (I’ll just let you all suffer in suspense).

Eric update: he is still alive (I think) and I hope someone is watering him… I wonder if it’s actually possible to kill an avocado plant.

Until next time,


Carney

Tuesday, 29 October 2013

Eric Blog

Hello people! It’s been a crazy last couple of weeks since with Fresher’s, starting my second year, working and having a social life.

Fresher’s was amazing; just a really good laugh having a good time with good people, I really enjoyed it. It’s even better as a first year as you don’t have any of that introductory stuff in the first week, so you can actually get some sleep! The SU really pulled out all the stops this year with some amazing events, including the Fresher Fairs. I now have enough free stuff to last me for the year. There was also a big mobile rock climbing wall at both the fairs as well, which I was responsible for running as president of the Climbing Society.

Stuff has only recently actually start to settle down and slot into a regular flow of things, but saying that there always is new things and challenges every week. For example this week I've been hobbling on crutches…Hockey, foot, painful.  So that’s been a whole barrel of laughs, although crutches are quite useful to prod and hit people with.

Second year is strange; it’s quite difficult to adjust, just because it is so different. For one, this year does actually count! It’s going quite well though, well relatively so anyway. I just need to put more effort into doing the reading instead of catching up with my favourite American shows (Homeland, Sons of Anarchy, and The Walking Dead etc.).

In my blogs I always try to have a useful message (as opposed to me just rambling on and on and on...). In this blog I’m just going to give a quick word of advice about choosing courses. So people always say choose what you enjoy and I can’t stress that enough. Don’t choose a subject because you think you should do it, pick and study a subject because you want to do it and because you have a genuine interest in that field of study.  There is no point in paying £9,000 a year (in most cases) to study a course just because you've been told to study that course for whatever reason. It’s you who has to pay the tuition fees, you who have to study it; therefore it should be who you pick the course. So do your re-search, look at all the different courses offered, look into the units that course offers and then make a well informed and a right decision J

Also, this is Eric. He’s an avocado plant, and I've been made to blog about him by my good friend http://gre-denise.blogspot.co.uk/). Like most plants, Eric likes to do plant like things. He’s likes to chill out in the sun, soak up the rays, turn it into food and then eventually grow into an avocado. Eric lives in our office (The Enquiry Unit) and is a valued member of our team. We all love Eric and can’t wait to eat what he produces. Check back for regular updates!
Denise (


So yeah, that’s it for now. I will post another blog soon (he says) about life and stuff. Enjoy the weekend!

Wednesday, 11 September 2013

Halls!

Hello again my millions of readers (ha), this is just another quick blog about stuff.

I thought in this blog I would say a quick point about accommodation.  As I mentioned in my previous blog I am local to London and Greenwich is my local university, but I still decided to move away from home. Living at home while studying works for some people, some of my friends still live at home and they’re happy, but it’s just not for me and you yourself have to make that decision whether or not you want to move away from home. Halls has a lot of benefits but a few disadvantages (e.g. the cost!) but nevertheless it is a good university experience.

Staying on the topic of halls, I know a lot of new students have recently been placed at Avery Hill accommodation as opposed to their choices in Greenwich. While I’m probably supposed to be impartial, trust me when I say Avery Hill is good if not better than Greenwich. While you have to get a 20 minute shuttle bus to and from uni (which is what I do), Avery Hill has more students on site, a gym, tennis courts, fields, a pond and Sparrows(our SU nightclub). And the rent is a lot cheaper as well.  so for those of you who have been placed at Avery, chill out, it is better and don’t worry!

Now onto other things: I start second year in a few weeks and I still have so much stuff to do. I have to move out of my Mum’s house into halls, organise and sort out a load of stuff for Fresher’s Fair and the next rock climbing society (which I’m president of) open day as well as go out for my birthday next week (which will be very messy…I’m going to be 20! What a rubbish age to be, no longer a teenager but neither an adult) and then I have to say goodbye to all my friends who are going to uni away from London, no doubt that will be equally as messy. So lots and lots of stuff to do, but then again I’m the type of person who somewhat enjoys being ridiculously busy and a couple (several) beverages. But still, busy busy busy.

Oh and a quick note about sports teams and societies are a really good part of university, it’s an instant way to make friends and have a laugh, if you are interested in them check out our Student Union page!

Soo yeah, that’s another blog from me and some more senseless rambling for you to digest, all the links are below. Hope you have a nice weekend; I’m now off for end of work drinks, bye bye!




Tuesday, 27 August 2013

My First Blog :)

Hello, my name is Carney and I have just completed my first year of my History degree at the University of Greenwich. This blog is just a general overview of what I get up to here at University.  In this entry I’m just going to cover a few things, like about me, accommodation, my course and SU Sports Teams & Societies and a little word about Fresher’s.

So a little bit more information about me first, I grew up in South East London and Greenwich has always been my local university. I went to Greenwich as it was my insurance choice and I failed to achieve a place and my first option. So even though Greenwich was my second option and my local university I have really enjoyed my first year here.

I still moved out into Halls, I live on Avery Hill campus (and will do so again next year) and I study on the Greenwich campus, so I take full advantage of the free shuttle bus service to and from class. I like living on Avery Hill as it’s cheaper, I don’t have to pay for an ensuite (as I wouldn’t want one), plus by living on Avery Hill you are able to meet a lot more people than you would by living there, just access to different networks, plus living at Avery means it’s a lot less distance to walk (crawl) home after a night out at Sparrows (our SU nightclub). I spent the year living in a flat with shared facilities and it was pretty decent.

So like I said I study History and I have enjoyed the course so far. In my first year we weren’t allowed to pick all History modules, we had to pick two other humanities electives. I liked this as I was able to do a Philosophy and a Sociology course as well, in addition to the two other history modules I did.  This mixed it up a bit and made it more interesting.  At first it was slightly weird adjusting to university life (academically), lectures and tutorials are different to that of sixth form classes. Depending on the lecturer, lectures can be really interesting and tutorials are always a laugh.  It’s a lot of work having force yourself to do your ‘homework’ when there are so many distractions, but I think I managed to get a pretty good balance between academic work and my social life, e.g. writing an essay in the pub. But I really like all the academics and get on with all the people on my course.

Another substantial thing to happen to me during my first year was joining a sports team and a society. When I first moved into my student accommodation, I was living with three other people, one who barely spoke any English, the other two who I just didn’t get on with at all (don’t worry, it’s unlucky that. That was why joining a sports team was such a good decision for me during Fresher’s Week. I joined Hockey at the Greenwich Fresher’s Fair and it was probably one of the best decisions I made this year. Straight away you meet so many different people, not only from your team but from all the other sports team as well. Whenever I have spoken to people about Sports teams and Societies, I’ve always compared them to American Fraternities and Sororities, just without the extravagance, as that seemed the easiest way to describe them. It’s also a really good way to keep fit and exercise.

All teams and societies are run by an elected student committee, so you can always get involved in the running of it as well! For example this year I also joined rock Climbing, which is a society, this is structured a little bit different to a sports team, but it is still really good and has the same advantages as a sports team. All sports teams and societies are mangled by SUUG and their web address if you wanted more information is www.suug.co.uk.

And finally just a quick word and about Fresher’s Fortnight, since this is my first blog and I suspect that the majority of people reading it (if anyone actually is) are those who are due to start in September, just a little bit of advice: don’t be afraid. Don’t be scared to talk to people, put yourself out there, everyone is in the same situation and you’ll be surprised at the awesome people you’ll meet.


Until next time, good bye! J