December

Applying to the right university

Applying to the right university

Applying to the right university

University Worries: How do I know I’m doing the right thing?

Katie Wroe-Beacon is a 2022 graduate with a BA Hons in English Literature. She now works as an Alumni Engagement Intern for the University. Katie reflects on her journey to choosing to study at Bath Spa University and beyond.

Choosing the right course

I remember that my path to choosing my degree wasn’t necessarily as straightforward as I might have liked. Initially, I thought that studying Anthropology was what I wanted, but I’m not as science-oriented as you probably should be for that type of course.

Advice for choosing your university course always feels somewhat cliche, “do what you love” or “do what you’re good at”. I didn’t really find it helpful. There’s always the question of “what if” that we seem unable to ignore.

I did, however, end up doing what I love. I’ve always been a big reader and there were always books at hand, which was a massive influence as I grew up.

I started looking at English Literature courses, going to open days and reading about universities online. The whole thing ended up feeling pretty overwhelming and I wasn’t really sure what was the best option.

"The passion of the lecturers at Bath Spa was key to me - they were as excited about the subject as I was and that really made it feel as though my choices and interests were valued."

Attending an open day

The open day I attended at Bath Spa was an incredibly rainy one. As I walked down from the top of campus to Commons to attend activities and an interview, I was pretty sure that I couldn’t have picked a day that was much worse.

However, even the rain couldn’t put me off! The University felt like a place I wanted to be and somewhere where I could grow and explore my passion for literature.

The course also offered me a sense of freedom I don’t recall finding anywhere else. There was an ability to direct the course and the modules that I took in order to explore elements of literature that I was most interested in. In my third year I studied a module focused on writing and the environmental crisis, which feels incredibly pertinent in the current times.

"I chose Bath Spa because it felt right to me, the course was what I wanted and the people I met during the open day were honest and open about their experiences."

Studying at Bath Spa

In the end I didn’t spend much of my time at university on campus. COVID-19 meant that about six months into my first year we moved online and back home. However, that didn’t stop the staff from creating an experience that allowed for a community to be nurtured.

When we could return to campus there was a sense of relief and we wanted to see those that had, for quite a while, become profile pictures on a screen. The friendships formed in the first year continued to flourish and I still go for dinner with them now.

Throughout my time as a student, I worked as a student ambassador. I talked about why I love the course but also was candid about what university life was like.

I remember a lot of the questions were often along the lines of “how do I know which university is the right one for me?” My answer remained the same throughout the open days, you go where it feels right. I know, I’m now the one offering the same cliche advice that I initially thought wasn’t all that helpful.

It was important to me that the prospective students weren’t making a choice based on simply the rankings of the university or their parents' opinion.

Working at Bath Spa

I now work as an Alumni Engagement Intern for the University and I can see all the ways that the community expands past the students and the staff.

Our Alumni are so interested in the work that goes on both at and in relation to the university, and it’s pretty cool to see what they’re up to as well. There’s so much going on as an extension of the university, from our Cultural Partners, to work we do with other organisations, that sometimes it feels like there’s too much to keep track of.

I think that this has shown me that people choose Bath Spa because it is a place full of connections that are determined to allow for growth. 

Disclaimer: The Bath Spa blog is a platform for individual voices and views from the University's community. Any views or opinions represented in individual posts are personal, belonging solely to the author of that post, and do not represent the views of other Bath Spa staff, or Bath Spa University as an institution.

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