University Life- Isabela

Business, Isabela

University is all about academic knowledge! Wrong!

University life is about you developing as an individual more than anything. The aim is after four years to become not only a graduate, but a responsible, committed and reliable person. Regardless of how much you think you will struggle, maturity will come along the way.

University work:

Part of your degree might include individual reports and some will be the result of teamwork. In unfortunate cases, it can be a learning curve that helps you to choose your co-workers carefully next time. Not everyone’s style of work is compatible, so you might encounter arguments, become irritated with peers, unhappy and encounter stressful situations. This is where planning becomes key, because not everyone will attend all meetings. You will be more concerned about the project than others and even in my case, end up doing someone else’s work. You will realise further on that other students’ perceptions of Uni life and their degree differs massively from yours. Don’t be afraid, lecturers will read every single student and when you will thrive, others will fall.

Accommodation:

The majority of the students will opt to go into halls in their first year. It offers safety and convenience for the newcomers, the international students or the ones moving away from other cities around the country, as well as parents’ peace of mind. I chose to commute from a close village for the first 2 years of my degree and halfway through my placement. For personal reasons, it was convenient initially, but after the first year, the strain of getting up very early in the morning coupled with the many sweaty runs for the bus meant my enthusiasm had worn off. However, I had many friends who found commuting in their cars quite enjoyable and preferred it that way.

Life at university:

Three years at University will become a very complex journey. You will meet new people, make new friends, swap friends, dump friends but you will always look back to great times you might never live again. As long as you have fun consciously and do not go overboard to miss consecutive lectures and deadlines you will be fine. Weekends are to have fun, enjoy them as three years will fly by before you know it!

Choose right:

Choosing the right University is a big decision for each and every student. The truth is, the University goes hand in hand with the degree you want to do and they will always complement each other. Be it a single honours course or a joint honours course (JHS) you get full support from the staff. Think well in advance if you want to combine two subjects because as weird as the combination might be, in most cases, you can do it. And if it goes wrong, don’t worry, everything in life is a learning curve, you can drop or change the subject after the first year.

Diversity at Derby:

There are students coming from all over the world to study at Derby, so you’ll be able to meet individuals with other cultures and maybe even learn new languages. Everyone’s new so that will make the process easier and be able to interact without being too shy to introduce yourself. The more open you are, the easier it will be to adapt to the new environment and integrate yourself amongst the other new students or ‘freshers’ in Uni terms. Speaking of ‘freshers’ as a student, you have discounts through your University cards, stores like Topman, Topshop, New Look and others will give you discounted rates for essentials like clothes, food and even haircuts!

But remember:

On the other side, as a new student, you are bound to forget that you will have stuff to read, homework to do and other similar things in advance of your lecture so make sure you check your e-mails! Every two days at the least, but even before you start a new game of Candy Crush or check Facebook a million times and still no updates, make a note – Unimail check!

University is not for granted, so make the most of it! Your degree is really important but don’t waste your time sleeping forever, you can gain invaluable experience while studying! Get involved with the Students’ Union and do volunteering to fundraise for charity causes. Otherwise, you can apply to do the Futures’ Award and participate in projects to gain an extra qualification to be put on your HEAR certificate at graduation or use as a talking point at interviews! So many things to do, you can also register to work through the Student Employment Agency for some extra money in your pocket. Casual vacancies come up all the time; so again, check your e-mails so you can grab it first!

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Presentations at University

Business, Isabela

First and foremost, let’s talk about the format. Mostly everyone uses PowerPoint (yes the old PowerPoint) for creating presentations. Depending on the subject, usually for Business themes and similar projects putting images/pictures in or links to Youtube to make it more interesting and modern. Some other students also try the Prezi online application which is useful for adding collages to presentations. Although I’ve never used it personally, I have come across presentations which looked amazing through Prezi. The other interesting thing about Prezi is that it is very interactive and has effects to keep the audience engaged.

Now, to the nitty gritty of presentations. In general, people run away from delivering presentations for of two main reasons: lack of confidence which leads to panic and group work.

Let’s start with the latter and elaborate. Teamwork is different from groupwork. Groupwork will be what you do most of the times in class, exchanging ideas and opinions and working together to finish a certain task. The same applies to teamwork but it’s more conclusive, because in order to become a team you have to blend together so the finished result is high quality work and everyone has contributed effectively. The issues arising with groupwork is that not all of us are compatible, some will want to lead, some will be unreliable, some will end up doing more work than others and so everything will be part of a learning curve. However, if everyone puts in the same effort, the grades will reflect the hard work and you will become an ace team!

The 5 most important tips I can recommend for presentations are:

  1. Prepare well in advance: make sure to rehearse the presentation with the team at least 3 times. This helps you gain more confidence as well as being able to know if you go over the time. Most presentations are timed for about 10-15 minutes so you should stick within that time limit, rather than go over and not be able to say important information.
  2. Think of a confident start to the presentation – the first few words always make an impact, so you can engage the audience from the beginning because otherwise they will be bored straightaway and they will pay less attention to the rest of the presentation.
  3. Make the transition between everyone’s parts as swift as possible so everyone gets to say their part without having an awkward silent break in between.
  4. If you feel better have cards to help you while presenting. Some lecturers allow it but do not come with an A4 piece of paper as it’s more likely you’ll lose your way trying to read off the paper. The cards should contain small structured sentences just to help you remember key facts.
  5. Know your stuff! It’s the best starting point to any presentation to understand the subject. Research well around it and prepare for any possible questions. Then, you will be more relaxed and it will come across during your presentation!

Here’s some further information to make you more comfortable before your presentations:

http://careers.theguardian.com/top-tips-for-improving-your-presentation-skills

 

Further tips in regards to how to structure a presentation:

  • Don’t use more slides than needed. You will notice in time that slides need to be concise and short, instead of wasting time using too many transitions.
  • If you can, use visual imagery such as photos, graphs and charts which show that you have made some research around the subject.
  • Do not overload the slide – the content shouldn’t be too little nor too much, just enough to make your point.
  • Key rule: ensure your presentation can run on any computer. Prepare to have compatibility issues, take a memory stick with you as well as sending it off to your e-mail.
  • Use simple fonts rather than becoming overwhelming so everyone from all over the room is able to read it. On the other hand, use contrasting colours for text and background so it’s easy to read but not too striking. Work on the balance of colours before the final draft of the presentation.

I hope these tips will help you with your future presentations!

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Students Union

Emily B

As a student at the University of Derby, you will automatically be enrolled as a member of the Students Union. It is independent from the University and is fully student led to represent the voice of students. Current students are elected to be the group of officer trustees who’s roles include the president, athletic union president, vice president of academic affairs and vice president of student welfare and students rights. Their main focus is to listen to any queries you may have as a student or deal with any problems you may be unhappy with and improve the students experiences.

You may consider running to become a student officer yourself. It is an opportunity to make a difference within the Uni and will also count towards your HEAR (Higher Education Achievement Record). You will receive full training within your role, with some roles such as the president, needing you to take a year out of your studying to fully commit to it.

If that doesn’t sound like your cup of tea but you still want to make a difference within your course then you could become a Programme rep. This will see you involved in meetings about issues within your course specifically. There will be 2 representatives per academic year of your course and you will be required to attend an annual conference at Derby campus to discuss your viewpoints and issues. You will still need to be elected for this role by your course mates but is a great way to gain some confidence and really get stuck in with your course. You will give your classmates a voice at the meetings and better the experiences for future students. I would recommend giving at least one of these a go as it is a fantastic experience.

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Institute of Travel and Tourism (ITT) Future You ‘On the Road’ at Buxton: An ambassador’s role.

Emily B

ITT Future You conference

The Institute of Travel and Tourism (ITT) Future You conference came to Buxton campus on March 10th 2015. It is a travelling conference that the industries top employers attend and they give lectures on the latest trends within the travel industry and about future jobs. It is essential to attend if you are part of a tourism related degree or are looking to go onto such a degree.  It was mine and another student ambassador’s role to ensure the event ran smoothly.  Supported by industry experts, it was a day packed full of talks, speed workshops and networking.  With over 170 students attending from Derby University as well as prospective students from surrounding colleges including Burton and South Derbyshire College, Derby College and Buxton and Leek College, the event was a hub of information and networking.

Student Ambassador Role

As a student ambassador, one of my roles is to make sure that any events or conferences held by the tourism or events department are well supported and a success. It involves setting up the rooms ready for the events, ensuring the speakers are well looked after and making sure the attendees are directed on where to go and what to do. It is a busy time and a long day but the chance to network with the speakers and be involved is well worth it!

The Day

It was an early start because I needed to be up at Buxton for 8am to start preparing for the conference. We arrived at Buxton and were greeted by the College Marketing Manager for Business, Jenny and the Senior Marketing Assistant in Education Liaison, Sarah. Myself and my friend Lydia were assigned tasks for the day by the Event organiser for ITT, Kelly. The first role was to organise the tables for the day and set up the goody bags that each student and lecturer were going to receive upon arrival. There were 170 in total and so this was no quick task! Upon completion, we were informed of the itinerary for the day:

10:30am- Conference- Leading industry experts Guest Speakers educational conference

13:00- Lunch Break

14:00- Speed Group Networking

15:00- Coffee Break

15:15- Speed Group Networking Continued

16:30- Event Ends

At around 10am colleges and speakers began to arrive and it was my duty to check in each visitor and speaker and assign them a group number for the speed dating session. Here, they were also handed a goody bag and informed of where to go. Around 170 students from various local colleges came to the event which including New College Nottingham and Burton College as well as students involved in tourism courses at Derby University. Once everyone had arrived and been allocated their group numbers the conference could begin.

The Conference

The conference in the morning began at 10:30am and consisted of seven speakers. These were:

– ITT ‘Future You’      – Perfect Weddings Abroad           -STA Travel

– BH Mallorca            – Stella Travel Services                 – Derby University

– Chatsworth

Each speaker gave a presentation of their personal background in the tourism industry and how they got to the position they were in. They then spoke about the jobs they were currently in and the potential jobs available within these organisations currently. Some included graduate programmes, internships, summer jobs and straight from college/ university work. They gave a real, honest insight into the jobs and how it is best to apply for these jobs, including some hints and tips. It was great to see how people can progress in their jobs, with some even starting their own business.

There was plenty to take in and the size of the companies and job roles varied from each organisation so there was a wide range of information, which was great. Now it was time for a well-earned lunch break- which was free because we had worked the event- bonus!

The Speed Group Networking

Once lunch was over, the students got into their assigned groups and the speed networking workshops began. The companies that took part in the networking were:

-ITT                    – Perfect Weddings Abroad             -STA Travel

– BH Mallorca      – Stella Travel Services                   – Derby University

– Shottle Hall        – The Co-operative Travel Management

Each session lasted for 10 minutes and allowed students to ask the companies any questions they may have specifically for the company or of the industry in general. It was great to be able to chat to the people that new all about the tourism industry on such an informal level. They gave really useful hints and tips on improving your CV, interview techniques and how to approach applications.

Why the day was such a success

The conference was great as I further developed my skills in hosting and preparing for events but also I got the opportunity to liaise with the speakers themselves on a more personal level and gain a fantastic insight into their industry. It is with events such as these you get to get a real taste for the area of work you would like to be in and also really flaunt your skills to prospective employers.

If you get the chance to become a student ambassador- go for it! Not only do you get paid for your help but the experiences and people that you meet could help further your career in the industry.

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My Placement Experience

Isabela

A placement is a great experience for several reasons. I only saw the pros in taking a break within my studies as I could gain more skills, but other students will go to different companies and therefore, reasons might vary. Some of my peers wanted to work in big companies like Coca-Cola, Rolls-Royce and Boots because they thought they experience will be unforgettable and the salary will exceed anyone’s expectations.

Furthermore, they wished they would get a job offer at the end to secure them employment after finishing University. I didn’t have an image of the exact company I wanted to work for and my expectations were average. After doing various part-time jobs such as a customer service assistant in a fish and chip shop and night shifts in a care home, I was longing to get the Marketing experience.

Therefore, I went through endless application processes for all types of companies who offered PR, Marketing and/or advertising placements, hoping I’ll find the one for me. My luck came very close to the placement applications deadline, and it was my last chance to secure a placement. I went for my interview on the Monday and the deadline was in the same week on Friday but that didn’t put me off, actually it had increased my passion and my relentlessness that I had to succeed. This was an important lesson for me and it’s great to be able to share this with prospective students, because you should never give up, persistence is the key and you will get there in the end no matter how many unsuccessful interviews and boring applications.

There was also the other side of us who decided not to take a placement, because they thought one year extra added to their degree and they thought focusing on their studies 100% of the time to get a straight first would make a huge difference. At the end of the day, it’s what clicks for you and I knew I needed, wanted and would love my placement.

My placement consisted of running the Employability and Enterprise Hub in the Atrium at Kedleston Road which was a new project, being launched in the same week when I started.

Looking back, here are the most important benefits to a placement:

  • I have gained practical experience in the industry I wish to work in – my placement started as a blank canvas, as initial goals were set but I had enough freedom to develop them the way I wanted. I have come out of the placement with a wide platform of skills and capabilities and now I feel more confident to write job applications and go to interviews.
  • Once I’ve finished the placement, I know my job opportunities have improved, because the 11 months of experience have made me a stronger candidate who hasn’t just got the right degree but also needs less training and is ready to take a challenge head-on.
  • Working in the sector enhances your experience of teamwork and further develops your interpersonal skills. In my case, there has been less teamwork and more individual work but even so, I have worked in teams and pairs to achieve targets, which I’m sure it’s valid for all organizations.
  • I have also developed an awareness of current developments in the sector, by doing job adverts for companies; I have observed the salary levels and the skills needed in order to match the marketing roles on the market.
  • The placement students returning back to study go onto achieve higher grades and better degrees. This is a fact because once the market has been understood all the assignments will make more sense and you will enjoy doing them.
  • Depending on your abilities and the firm’s budget you have a chance of a firm offer of employment – the majority of the companies will offer a job prospect at the end of the degree according to the student’s performance and job possibilities. If this is not possible you still have plenty of experience to get another job. I didn’t have the opportunity to come back into the Hub because it was only designed to be experience for placement students. However, I made contacts in various departments within the University and so I could do temporary work for them while studying in my third year.

Would I do it again?

A placement can reveal your best aptitudes as well as showing you where you need to improve further.

The best thing about my placement was the fact that the Employability and Enterprise Hub was divided between two distinctive departments of the University. For example, the Careers and Employment Service who helps students with CVs, Cover letters and Interview techniques was useful in order to observe management style and teamwork amongst the staff. Similarly, I had a lot of input from the Business School newly changed to Business College which organised a lot of networking events and put me in touch with companies. I have done a lot of advertising work for many companies, communicated through e-mail and phone in order to organize meetings and sessions where students could talk to them and introduce themselves for future job prospects.

My responsibilities included daily contact with current students and graduates, and even on some occasions working on Open Days and presenting the Hub and the University to prospective students. That was a lot of fun and again, helped me become less nervous when doing presentations.

So my advice would be to go for it!

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Societies and how to get involved

Business, Isabela

Before I finished my placement, I was asked by the committee board of the Business and Entrepreneurial Society if I’d like to join them as the Treasurer. All the students leading the Society were going on internships and placement during summer and there was no one to take over the following term. It sounded like a great idea and so I joined as the Treasurer.

Every Society has to start up with the main three board members in order to exist, Society President, Secretary and Treasurer. Each role is varied from each other. The President will make sure to look after the members and probably be involved 90% in the creative side, trying to bring the members ideas to life. The Secretary will ensure that there is sufficient assistance for the President and be the middle man between the members and committee where necessary as well as President’s right hand. In comparison, the Treasurer will look after the financial side, and ensure that the Society account is looked after. For example, when students join the Societies, the top-up fee goes into an account, which will provide funding for any activities members would like to happen.

Usually in Freshers’ Week, most of the Societies have a stand where they ‘sell’ themselves. You are able to browse and see what Society interest you most. Then, once you have paid the Society fee of £7 for the whole year, you can just pay the top up fee and join any other Societies you want. This way, you can pick and choose who you want to join, i.e. our Society – The Business and Entrepreneurial Society and the DJ & Mix Society.

Useful facts to know about joining a Society:

  1. It’s more useful than you think – by joining a Society you’re not only enhancing your free time by doing fun stuff but also you’re relaxing your brain to learn and study better. By joining a more academic focused society – i.e The Business and Entrepreneurial Society, you will do activities centred around work experience so you can establish contacts and network constantly.
  2. The dates when you can join a Society are between September and June within an academic year, although most students will make their decision during the Fresher’s Fair.
  3. You have the opportunity to set up your own Society if you wish so. The Students’ Union support any new Societies bearing in mind you adhere to their policies and regulations in regards to Society set-up purposes.

My personal advice would be to take as much advantage of the Fresher’s Fair as possible. Not only will the Societies will be pitching to you, but you will get a better idea of what suits you best, and instead of spending your student loan on nights out, try to spare some money to have fun with new people and enjoy your time at Uni. Do not forget, there’s also the Refreshers’ Fair for when you come back for your second semester in January with freebies and other things available. You might drop out after the first year, a lot of things change and maybe you want to join a new Society, nothing stops you, it’s entirely up to you. Also, from my point of view, you could easily join some sports Societies which will feel like going to the gym and keeping fit for less than the gym price. Alternatively, if the gym is your favourite, we have a Gym on site at Kedleston Road, so do enquire for the prices, they will be discounted for our students.

If you want to find out more information about the Students’ Union and the Societies before coming to University of Derby have a look at the link below:

http://www.udsu.co.uk/societies/

There’s also the Facebook Page for the Students’ Union if you want to have a look, we have had our Graduation Ceremonies lately and pictures are everywhere, this might be you in three years’ time!

https://www.facebook.com/udsupage

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Being an Education Liaison Mentor

Sakina O

Last week I did my first shift as an Education Liaison Mentor (ELM) working for the University of Derby. ELMs work with the Education Liaison team and help to deliver sessions to schools and colleges within the region and also participate in applicant days and open days at the university.

I first heard about the role when someone came to talk about it in one of my lectures at the end of my first year and it sounded like the perfect job for me. It’s very flexible and I can work as little or as much as I please which is great as it means that I can fit work in around my lectures and other family commitments that I have.

Having registered my interest, I was invited to attend a training session in October where I had to participate in various group activities and give a short presentation on a certain topic that we were given. This was a really fun and informal session and after completing this, I was offered and accepted the role of ELM.

Unfortunately, because of the million assignments I had to do last semester, I wasn’t in a position to take on any work until last week but now my diary is quickly filling up with loads of different jobs! I won’t lie; I was terrified in the run up to my first shift and was convinced that I was going to be chucked in at the deep end and left alone with a rowdy bunch of year 11s but that couldn’t have been further from the truth.

The first session that I worked was ‘Revision Techniques’ and I had the choice to either just observe or I could pick a slide that I wanted to present. My instincts were to just observe but I decided to bite the bullet and have a go and do you know what? It wasn’t anywhere near as bad as I thought it would be. I was talked through the presentation beforehand with the Education Liaison Assistant (ELA) who was leading the session and there was a paper copy of the presentation with notes that I could refer to. The kids were all really engaged and I think they found it really useful in the run up to their GCSEs.

Since then I have worked a number of different sessions and am finding it to be a really interesting experience, not all classes are as well behaved as my first one but the teachers are always close at hand to shut down unruly behaviour so it’s not too scary! Being an ELM has even got me thinking again about potentially doing a PGCE when I graduate which is a career path that I had totally discounted. All in all, I am loving the role and getting some really great experience to add to my CV.

If you think you might be interested in becoming an ELM then please email ELTeam@derby.ac.uk for more information.

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Why work while at university?

Sakina O

Why work while at university? It might seem like a question with a really obvious answer, but there are loads of other reasons why working whilst you are studying can be really beneficial.

Let’s tackle the obvious answer first; who wouldn’t like a bit of extra money? Money is nice, it helps you to buy stuff and money makes the world go round and let’s face it, you don’t have an awful lot of money as a student so any extra you can get your hands on is a bonus! It’s not however, the only reason to work as a student as there are many other benefits that might not be so obvious at first glance.

By having a part time job while you are studying, you will gain some valuable ‘real world’ experience which will make you more employable in the future. Even if you are stacking shelves in your local supermarket, you will gain loads of transferable skills which will help you stand out from other candidates when it comes to applying for graduate roles.

Part time work can also put you in contact with people who may be in a position to help you in the future – networking is a crucial ability to have, particularly as a Business student and there are regular networking events held where you can come along and meet potential employers.

Working is also a great way to meet people; starting at university can be pretty scary if you don’t know anyone and having a part time job is an excellent way to make new friends. If you left a job to come to university, it’s well worth asking your manager if you can get a transfer to a nearby branch if there is one. That way you already have something that is familiar while you are getting to grips with your new surroundings.

Working is also a way to get a taste of what your choice of potential career may actually be like. You might want to have a career in retail management when you graduate and by having a part time job in that field, you can make a true assessment of whether it is really the job for you.

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Delicious and cheap meal ideas on a budget

Sakina O

On receiving your student finance, you might feel that you can splurge everyday on takeaways and eating out but you’ll soon find that your money doesn’t go as far as you would like. You might also be one of the many students that actually enjoy the experience of creating a delicious and satisfying meal from scratch or like me; you might have a family that you need to feed on a budget while still meeting their nutritional needs. Whatever your circumstances, here are a few of my favourite pocket friendly recipes that you can either use as a starting point or adapt to your own taste.

Macaroni Cheese – Serves 2

Comfort food at its finest! Either eat with a friend or pop the leftovers in the fridge to reheat and have the next day.

Ingredients

125g Macaroni

20g Butter

20g Plain Flour

250ml Milk

125g Grated Cheddar

Salt and Pepper to taste

Method

  1. Fill a large pan with enough water to submerge the macaroni and then bring to the boil. Once boiling, add the macaroni and turn the heat down to a simmer and leave for around 10 – 12 minutes; once ready drain well using a colander.
  2. While the pasta is boiling, melt the butter in a small saucepan on a medium heat. Once melted mix in the flour to make a roux (this is a clumpy, doughy mixture). Next, slowly add the milk bit by bit whilst stirring continuously until all the milk is used and you are left with a thick, pourable white sauce.
  3. Lastly, add the grated cheddar cheese to the white sauce and continue stirring until combined. Mix the cheese sauce in with the macaroni, season to taste and then enjoy.

Corned Beef Hash – Serves 4

This is a delicious, cheap and filling meal which is great for cold winter evenings. You can make this to share with flatmates or leftovers can be frozen to have another day.

Ingredients

1 tin Corned Beef – sliced

2 tins barbecue baked beans

1 medium onion – sliced

2 medium potatoes -sliced

100g grated cheddar cheese

Method

  1. Preheat your oven to 175 degrees Celsius.
  2. In an ovenproof dish, layer the potatoes, onion, corned beef and beans. Repeat this process until you have used all the ingredients but make sure you end with a layer of sliced potatoes on the top.
  3. Sprinkle on the grated cheese so that the top is covered evenly and bake in the oven for 45 minutes until the cheese is browned and bubbling. Sit down and enjoy this delicious treat!

Lilt Chicken – Serves 1

You are going to have to trust me on this one, it sounds a bit odd but it really is yummy and if you use diet Lilt, it’s actually a very healthy meal! It’s a homemade version of Cantonese style sweet and sour chicken but at a fraction of the price.

Ingredients

1 Chicken breast – cubed

½ Onion – cubed

½ Red pepper – cubed

175ml Lilt (or other branded tropical drink)

4 tbsp. Passata (cooked, strained tomatoes – widely available)

1 tbsp. cooking oil

75g Rice

Method

  1. In a frying pan, heat the oil and fry the cubes of chicken until they are a light golden brown. Add the peppers and onions and fry for 2 or 3 minutes.
  1. Add the Lilt and Passata bring to the boil and then reduce the heat and simmer for 20 minutes.
  1. While the chicken is cooking, bring a pan of water to the boil, add the rice and boil for 10-15 minutes. Once cooked, drain the rice well using a colander, place onto a dinner plate and spoon over the chicken mixture. Sit back and enjoy your budget Chinese fakeaway!

Pitta Pizzas – Serves 1

Quick, easy, cheap, tasty – what other reasons do you need?!

Ingredients

2 Pitta bread

4 tbsp. Passata

4 tbsp. grated cheese

A drizzle of olive oil

A pinch of oregano (mixed herbs will do!)

Any other toppings that you might fancy e.g. ham, chicken, sweetcorn, onions, tuna…

Method

  1. Preheat your grill.
  2. Spread Passata over both pittas and sprinkle with cheese. Add any other toppings of choice, sprinkle a pinch of oregano and drizzle with a small amount of olive oil.
  3. Place under the grill for approximately 10 minutes until the cheese is slightly golden. Tuck in and enjoy another lovely meal that’s loads cheaper than getting a takeaway!

If you have any recipes of your own that you would like to share or have any questions about feeding yourself at university then please get in touch. I love to cook almost as much as I love to eat!!

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Applicant Day Review!

Business, Isabela

I’ve really enjoyed my time here at Derby and so when I was asked to help with the applicant day, I was more than happy! For me this represented a great opportunity to meet prospective students coming from all over the country, giving me an opportunity to talk to them about life at Derby and my experiences here.

The Kedleston Road campus quickly filled up with people from 9am onwards, luckily there was no sign of snow in Derby as this would have been tricky! One of the things I love is the atmosphere in the Atrium, and it was great watching the reaction of our guests as they walked in to this great space.

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As a subject ambassador, my role was to give an insight to prospective students on what life is like at Derby, not just from the academic side but also about living and working in Derby. Luckily, this all comes quite naturally to me as my experiences here have been great. I could have carried on all day…

Both prospective students and their guests seemed to be full of questions which was great. Here are some of the most frequently asked questions I encountered…

  1. For some social life was a top priority so let’s elaborate on that. It’s essential that you have some free time outside your studies to relax and have fun with your friends. Derby is a vibrant city with a lot of places to eat, to party and to chill after a long week. In my opinion Derby gets 10/10 on this one.
  2. Accommodation comes up next, and this is another area that Derby does well in. In order to secure a place in the Halls for your first year at least, you have to apply early. As soon as you are confirmed get in touch with Student Living to secure a place. Derby is well known for having great quality student accomodation across the city. The applicant day is perfect opportunity to take a tour around some of your accomodation options.
  3. The cost of living worries everyone when coming to University. I cannot compare the cost of living with other cities because I’ve only lived in Derby but personally I find it a very affordable place to live (if you’re sensible!). There are a lot of offers and discounts available so you can eat out every so often without breaking the bank.
  4. For some, the range of societies avaiable counts towards the final decision. Luckily, we’ve got a great Students’ Union and so if your desired society doesn’t exist, why not start your own?! As long as you have three representatives you can start your own Society.
  5. Linked with cost of living, I was also asked about job opportunities during your course and following graduation. Again this is an area where you are very much in control, but the university has a great careers service and a student employment agency which is crucial for some!

Don’t forget, the next open day is on Saturday 28th of February 2015! And also keep an eye out for the next Applicant Day – if you haven’t booked a place do it now!

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