University Cultural Differences

Upon joining University I had only known one way of communicating, one method of doing things, one type of person and one way of life; the Liverpool way.

For 18 years of my life I was surrounded by people who share the same values, morals, style, beliefs, religion and even the same cup of tea preference.

Then all of a sudden I am hurled into a strange environment with peculiar surroundings living among people with different accents, food traditions, dress senses, music tastes, political beliefs and most importantly, opposing opinions.

During my first year of University I was living in student accommodation sharing a kitchen with 3 Chinese people. This introduced me to a whole new world of ingredients and flavours.
I currently live with an Irish man who has educated me with a total array of music. I have French, Romanian, Lebanese friends from all walks of life.
The only time I’d ever saw a Spanish person was on the television, but now I’m playing chess with one daily in my own living room. If you’d have told me that when I was an 18-year-old who’d never left his hometown I’d have laughed at you. Heck, I’m even writing this blog accompanied by my Ghanaian friend.

Diving into University life with such a variety and mixture of different people with different cultures and opinions may sound strenuous and overwhelming, but trust me it is the most enlightening and eye-opening transition you will experience. Viewing life from a different perspective is always a positive and nevertheless, spending your entire life living within your own cultural bubble is the biggest display of ignorance of them all.

5 reasons you should study in Hull

City of Culture

In 2017, Hull was awarded City of Culture which had a major impact on the city’s economy, gaining £32.8m in funding. The success of Hull has strengthened ambition and local pride within the community and opportunities for things such as networking has increased dramatically. Hull is finally on the map as more and more tourists are visiting every year for the amazing art and culture it possesses.

Art

Hull is now also known for its iconic pieces of art such as the Siemens wind turbine which was displayed in the middle of the City Centre.

 

 

A piece of art called the ‘weeping window’ was created on the outside of the Maritime Museum where ceramic poppies were cascaded down the side of the building. This was a beautiful and sentimental moment for Hull.

Affordability

Another reason why you should study in Hull is because it is one of the cheapest by far for cost of living, which is the music to every students’ ears. This includes independent shops and great food including vegan cafes and restaurants. With plant-based living become more of a trend, Hull embraces this and offers a range of great food at amazing prices.

Museums and History

A lot of people don’t know this but there is a lot of interesting history behind Hull and various museums you can visit for free to learn more about such as the Hull Maritime and Streetlife Museum.

“It’s never dull in Hull”.

Last but not least, I may be biased since I’m from Hull but the people are super friendly and you will be sure to feel right at home here.

Something sporty – joining a society

For many people moving to university is a big change which can at first seem daunting; everyone is a stranger and people may wonder how to make themselves feel more at home. One way is to join a society, and luckily Hull have hundreds on offer making it easy to find an activity everyone can enjoy. 

Being a member of the Women’s Lacrosse team, I can vouch that the sports teams are a great way to meet new people as well as becoming more active. Having never picked up a lacrosse stick before, the team members are there to teach you from the very basics up to helping people who have been playing for years.

Lacrosse have trainings three times per week as well as weekly socials, a great way to bond with your fellow teammates while getting dressed up and boozy! These activities can give you a reason to get out of your, which may seem lonely, room to socialise and interact with the new friends you meet.

I myself waited until second year to join a society, however regret not joining sooner as I have met many new people from the club. Even if you are not the biggest fan of exercise, all teams have the opportunity to join as solely a social member, which can be a cheaper option too!

So my advice would be not to hesitate when joining a club! There is no better time than the present, and they’re a great way to meet people you will be sharing your years at university with.

Below is a list of all the societies at Hull.

https://hulluniunion.com/societies/list

Just Say Yes!

If people were more inclined to say yes rather than no whenever presented with a difficult question or a challenging opportunity and vowed to exceed their comfort zone more often, the world would be a much better place – not to mention incredibly more fun!

Having not left the country since I was 9 and never travelling further than Hull on my own accord, when the opportunity first arose for me to volunteer in Romania I was skeptical and hesitant. Romania isn’t considered the most luxurious of places to visit and considering the country publicly executed their own communist leader only 30 years ago, I had reason to be doubtful.

Regardless of all these doubts and worries, I said yes and my god am I thankful that I did!

In just over 3 weeks, I got 3 volunteering certificates awarded for my help working within the agriculture project, helping manage an international NGO in the office and teaching English to young Romanian kids. However, these 3 certificates were certainly not the only things I took away from this experience.

During my time I conquered 3 mountains. I left Romania a professional egg-eater after finishing 2nd in a Romanian egg-eating competition.

Halfway through my stint I discovered Liam Gallagher was performing in a festival the complete opposite end of the country to me. This is a perfect example of my opening sentence. Something I should have definitely rejected and said no to; but instead I simply said yes.

This experience definitely brought me out my comfort zone and pushed me to mental and physical boundaries I could never have fathomed.

So next time, just say yes!

An extraordinary ride during university life

I have a deep attachment to Hull, but I didn’t notice it until an extraordinary experience made me redefine the city’s definition in my heart.

In summer, the island of Great Britain has plenty of sunshine,This perfect season gives many adventurers the chance to conquer nature and prove themselves.

 

I officially set off from the gate of Hull University on June 12,passed Birmingham, passed Oxford, Reading, Stonehenge, Southampton. Finally I reached the beach of portsmouth, which lasted 12 days and averaged 85 kilometers every day.

Although I prepared a full set of cycling equipment, I was full of uneasiness when I set off. My friends chose to return to their home country this holiday season, so this ride was a difficult and lonely challenge for me.

I prepared sleeping bags and tents, but English law does not allow citizens to set up tents at will, so I have to choose campsite. Campsite is cheaper than hotels. Fortunately, there are many kind people who live here with their caravans. I proudly tried to say hello to everyone passing by and told them that I was a student at Hull University and set off from Hull and headed towards the southernmost city in the UK.

Sometimes pride is like this. Suddenly one day I want to measure the world with my feet.it is also a kind of romance for me!

On the return journey, when I arrived in Hull, looking at familiar streets, I have to say I failed to control my tears. Suddenly I realized that Hull was like home to me.

This will be one of my deepest memories at Hull University!

Thank for your reading and hope for you leave feedback!
Email address :S.Xu@2017.hull.ac.uk

From halls to home – decorating your student accommodation

It can be difficult deciding what to take to university when first moving away from home. However, these few decoration tips can help make what at first seem like a bare room be turned into somewhere you can call home.

Fairy lights

Fairy lights are an alternative to harsh luminescent lighting which your accommodation may provide. They are a good way to make your room cosier, helping you to relax after a hard day of studies. 

Image result for fairy lights tumblr

Photos 

The move to university may come with a great deal of homesickness, so printing photos of the ones you miss back home is a great way to combat these feelings. Many halls offer pin boards, the perfect place to hang your most treasured photos. Below is a link to a website offering cheap and fast photo printouts. 

https://www.freeprintsapp.co.uk

Command strips

Many student landlords can be very strict, stipulating rules which may seem like there’s no ability to personalise your room. However, command strips are a perfect way to decorating your walls, being able to easily stick things to your wall which can be taken down with no damage at all! They can easily be found at department stores such as Wilko’s and B&Q. 

Frames hung using command strips

Storage

Ensuring that your room is tidy and organised can ensure you don’t get too overwhelmed with the move to university. Purchasing storage baskets from places such as IKEA can make sure your room doesn’t get too cluttered, with a clear room meaning a clear mind!

Image result for copper desk storage

A Week in My Life

The three main activities that make up my week is Food, Work and Gym, and probably in that order. I’m a man who loves his food. Ive recently started to bulk up in the gym so I now just eat and eat and eat and then validate it by saying “i’m bulking’. Currently I’ve been having a high protein intake diet which basically means that I try and add meat into everything I eat to boost up my protein levels. This is costly though so I have to work long hours to make up for the high food bill, but do I regret it?? Nope.

I work in a sports academy which mainly hire out facilities for teams to use. My job basically entails me ensuring things run smoothly in the whole changing over of teams i.e. ensuring the 7-8 booking come off on time and the 8-9 booking goes on on time. I also have to set equipment out such as the gymnastics and trampolines. The academy also has a gym so I spend some of my time in the gym either fixing machines or person training or even just chatting to some of the elderly members. For anyone interested I might as well add our website just incase anyone wants to book one of our facilities (https://www.smchull.org/sm6-sixth-form/sports-academy)

My little plug over leads me onto the last large part of my weekly hobby. I go to the gym 4-5 times a week depending on which days my workout split lands on. I operate on a Push-Pull-Leg split for anyone wondering which basically means I have a day where my exercises are ‘pushing’ away and then ‘pulling’ towards me and then finally legs which is the killer!!

My week is kind of repetitive at the moment with uni filling the gaps when i’m not doing any of the latter. all im doing now is just plodding along until I book a holiday;)

Where to party in Hullywood

Hull is a city which is in growing popularity, especially around the University, and their nightlife reflects this. With a continuously growing student population, the nightclubs are becoming ever more popular, so here are some venues to try for a great night out!

○ Welly

The Welly club is best known for their indie music, with student nights each Thursday being dedicated to the genre. However, with three different rooms on offer, as well as opening on Saturdays providing a ‘Shuffle’ night hosting a wide mix of music from 80’s to pop, there’s something for everyone. Welly is also a popular venue for live music artists to perform at. 

Image may contain: one or more people, crowd and indoor

○ Piper

Piper is one of the smaller clubs in Hull, however this does not decrease its popularity. Their ‘Get Lucky’ Monday nights being one of the most popular amongst students at Hull, playing a mix from pop to R&B classics. Being located down Newland Avenue also means that it’s only walking distance from most student accommodation. 

○ Atik

Consisting of three multiple levels each hosting differing genres, Atik one of Hull’s most popular and well-known clubs. Busy every Friday and Saturday night until late, there’s always an opportunity to put your heels on to go for a dance. 

Image result for atik hull

So, with Hull hosting some of the cheapest prices, and all venues being just a short taxi journey away – or even a walk if you fancy it – there’s no reason not to get glammed up to go and give them a try!

Top 3 Gyms In Hull

Xercise4Less

  • Located on Clough Road, HU5 1SR, This gym is close to the university (being roughly a 10 min walk away from the campus), cheap (costing £9.99pm with a 20% discount for students)
  • Price: 10/10, Very Cheap for what you get.
  • Equipment: 7/10, They have a vast amount of equipment for both cardio and weights.
  • Location: 8/10, Its very close to the campus but on a rainy day, I can see the walk put people off going.
  • Website: https://www.xercise4less.co.uk

UltraFlex

  • Located on 261 Hawthorn Ave, Hull HU3 5EN. This gym is the furthest one on the list in reaction to distance to the campus (19 mins car drive away) this gym costs £29.50 direct debit or £34.50 Cash pm. This gym is predominantly a weightlifting gym.
  • Price: 7/10, If your main aim is to solely lift weights, it is an excellent facility but it is costly.
  • Equipment: 9/10, taking into consideration that it is a weightlifting gym, the lack of cardio machines isn’t an issue.
  • Location: 3/10, Most uni students will not have a car meaning getting to the gym will mean they either have to get a lift or get the bus.
  • Website: https://ultraflexgym.co.uk

Hull University Gym

  • Located in the sport building on the Uni campus, this gym is ideally located for students. The gym is £19.95pm for students for the gym only and £35pm for the full use of the sport facilities.
  • Price: 8/10, The gym is relatively expensive if you want the full package but for the basic package, the price is very cheap.
  • Equipment: 9/10, Due to the fact that the gym is newly built, the equipment is state of the art and relatively new.
  • Location: 10/10: the gym is on campus so you can’t get much closer then that.
  • Website: https://sport.hull.ac.uk

How Gym Changed My Life

^^^ My Gym Total Fitness ^^^ (https://www.totalfitness.co.uk/)

Back in 2017, I was not in the best state of mind. This point in my life was a low point you could say. Due to an injury that occurred which prevented me playing football, I felt my life lacked a purpose. Before the injury, for me, it was football 24/7. I was either playing/watching or on FIFA. You could say that I was obsessed. However, due to my knee problem, I was left unable to play the sport I loved.

Bored and a little bit depressed, I was searching for something new to help fix the void that is now there. Lucky for me, my college, being a sporting college, was equipped with a gym facility so I thought “why not give this a go?”. If I’m honest, I was not a fan at first due to the fact I went on my own. From going to a team sport to a self motivated activity was a drastic change that I was not expecting. This initial doubt was removed when I convinced a friend to start with me.

The benefits came straight away when my joined. This not only added the social aspect I enjoyed, but crucially, this provided competition between the two of us as we was trying to out-lift one another.  

I think the gym helped me in numerous ways ranging from adding a purpose to my day all the way to increasing body positivity. However, I feel the main benefit was all in all, making me happy again. I can’t stress enough to anyone thinking if they should go, be it for health reasons or they are in a similar situation to me, just GO DO IT!!