Open Days at Edge Hill!

Hello all, hope you’re doing well!

It’s Open Day season for Edge Hill, as lots of you are probably thinking about where to go and are starting your UCAS applications. Open Days are the best way for you to get an idea of whether you like the University, the courses you are interested in and the accommodation.

An Edge Hill Open Day gives students an opportunity to look around the facilities and the buildings for what you are interested in. There are opportunities for buildings tours, and to ask students who are currently studying at the University to give you some insight into what it’s like to study the course you’re looking at and what it’s like to be a student at Edge Hill.

As well as this, you can also get campus and accommodation tours from our lovely Student Guides. The Student Guides are current Edge Hill students who are there to help you with any questions, and run the tours. These tours give you a better look at the campus and what’s here, and the accommodation tours are an excellent thing which I’d recommend any student who is looking at staying on campus should do. When I had an accommodation tour whilst I was looking at the University, I was interested in the cheapest accommodation- Back Halls- but I wanted to check if I felt like I could be happy there, as feeling settled is a huge help when it comes to study stress. And when I was taken to Back Halls I got to look at the kitchen, bathroom and rooms. It massively helped me make my decision.

There are also talks occurring throughout the day, both general welcome talks for the University and then subject specific talks in which you can meet your prospective teachers and ask them more questions about the course to get a better feel of what you would be expecting to learn and get from the course.

Our next open day is Saturday 2nd December 2017, from 10am-3pm.

We also have open days on Saturday 16th June 2018, from 10am-3pm and Saturday 18th August, 10am-3pm.

If you would like to book for one of these open days, click here!

York Aesthetica Film Festival Trip!

On Friday the media department hosted a trip to York’s film festival, which I was fortunately lucky enough to go on! The film festival was a long but enjoyable day, which is what I will be blogging about today, enjoy!


York Aesthetica Film Festival, or otherwise known as ASFF, is a BAFTA-recognised short film festival that takes place annually at the beginning of November in York. The festival includes film screenings, industry masterclasses, hosted networking sessions and panel discussions.


This was my third year attending the festival through the university, this being my favourite year by far! Overall, this is the festival’s seventh year running, screening films in 18 different venues across the city, it was quite popular this year. The university has run this trip every year I have been here, and for £5, you can’t go wrong. 


We started our journey at the university, in Creative Edge at 7:30. On arrival, we were given lanyards and masterclass tickets. The masterclass you attend is your own choice as when you order the ticket through the university, you are given a choice of topics to choose from. Examples of the masterclasses which the festival offers are on topics such as casting, director, camerawork and advertising.


Setting off from the University at 8 o’clock, we travelled to york on two coaches, and 3 hours later we were there!  Arriving in York my group headed embarked to the York Theatre Royal to watch the thriller selection. Turns out the theatre was very close to the car park we were dropped off at, so got there in record time to watch the judges favourite short films that were entered this year. After watching those films, we stayed and watched the thriller selection.

My 3 top picks from the festival out of the films I watched were:

  • Second to None: A gory stop-motion comedy about the oldest man in the world and his twin brother, which was made in Ireland
  • Gridlock: A thriller about a little girl who goes missing during a traffic jam on a country road. (This one was amazing!) Again, made in Ireland.
  • Wash Club: A thriller about a journalism student who discovers a tumble drier cult on campus. The film was made in the Uk.

Overall the trip was super fun, I got to watch all the films I wanted to and afterwards I got to hang out in York, going to an all you can eat and the York dungeon with my friends! For the price of the trip, I’d easily recommend it to anyone as even if you don’t think you’ll watch many films with your pass, you can still get out there and discover York, which many people did. The bus journey home was silent, as everyone was either asleep or listening to music, it was peaceful, it was sweet, and it was the perfect way to end the day.


Thanks for reading this post, I hope you found it somewhat interesting. Feel free to comment on topics you’d like me to talk about.
Until next time!  

Film /Show of the day: Arrested Development (2003-)

EHU’s Money Advice Team

Edge Hill University is well known for its student services, being voted 3rd in UK for Student Support in 2017. In my experience, this holds true. The IT support, Careers Advice, and Counselling services at EHU really are great. But today I want to tell you about the Money Advice Team.

I’ve worked for the Money Advice Team in the past, as a Money Buddy, presenting to and answering questions for prospective students on Open Days and other events. The Money Advice Team also informed me of the Student Opportunity Fund, which has helped me to spend my sandwich year in the United States!

The Money Advice Team are open for drop-ins Monday and Friday, 10am-1pm, and Tuesday and Thursday from 1pm-4pm. They offer a range of services for different purposes – if you’re worried about finances, they can help you. All queries from budgeting to funding are supported. A resource that many students might not know about is the Student Support Fund, which can help students who “have serious financial difficulties or whose access to higher education might be inhibited because of financial reasons.” There is an assessment process, but if you are eligible, you won’t have to pay back the money you receive.

The Money Advice Team is currently situated in the Student Information Centre (SIC) and can also put you in touch with Edge Hill Works, who can help you find a part-time job. There are numerous on-campus jobs, but of course, there are more in Ormskirk and the surrounding area. Even Liverpool (particularly Liverpool ONE) has some part-time jobs that are available for Edge Hill Students.

Also of use is the Money Matters website, which has information relating to the above, as well as tuition fees, bursaries, scholarships, etc. So if you’re unsure of the difference between the maintenance loan and your tuition fee loan, check it out! A particularly useful tool is the Scholarship Calculator, which can inform you, after five short questions, if you are eligible for a scholarship.

 

East Side Story: Big Rock

Since Mary-Claire had her last day on the 13th October, I’ve been working independently on the prairie restoration project. This was a little rocky at first, as I got used to the method of identifying and collecting the plants – but after a little advice from Andrew and practice with another research (and herbarium) assistant, Lindsey, I got the hang of it. It’s still a time-consuming process however, especially when the plot has monsters such as Helianthus pauciflorus, where the plant easily fills two of our large brown bags. Also, as expected, we have been collecting biomass at a quicker pace than we can dry the material. With limited oven space available, fresh biomass must be stored in the coolers until it can be dried. But space in the cooler quickly gets used! The weather has also been a factor we’ve sometimes had to fight against since we cannot collect biomass if the plants are wet from the rain.

On the days when it has been too damp to collect material, I have been assisting Mira with some lab work, preparing me for the work I will be doing after my time on the prairie restoration project has come to a close. I helped with a DNA extraction and also a gel run, both techniques I have done before albeit only a handful of times. This also got me accustomed to working in the lab and biohazard room.

Towards the end of October, the trees finally realised it was autumn, and started showing their rusty, scarlet hues. I saw an equally vibrant cardinal flitting about the trees near the visitor one day after collecting in the morning. On the evening of the 26th, after work, I cycled around the East Woods. Having been here around a month and a half, it was about time I saw the larger side of the Arboretum, having only really seen the West side until then. There were some beautiful lone trees and the woods as a whole were lovely. Sadly, by the time I reached the far side of the East Woods, by the Big Rock visitor station, it was already dusk and I didn’t have time to actually take the trail out to see Big Rock. I got home before dark with the lure of Big Rock still calling to me. Another day, Big Rock. Another day.

Places to Eat on Campus!

No matter what course you’re studying at university, lectures are inevitable, whether they start at 9 o’clock, 2 o’clock or even 5 o’clock! You’ve got to be on campus ready, which doesn’t always leave time for grabbing food to go. That’s why today I will be highlighting the different places you can get food on campus! On campus there is a variety of shops, and restaurants, which sell different meat and vegetarian dishes, catering for a diverse range of dietary needs.


As I stated above 9am lectures are unfortunately a reality, and if you’re a coffee junkie, who needs that bit of caffeine kick before your 9am lecture, Starbucks is the place for you! Located in the centre of the hub it’s the perfect place to grab and go,  or if you have the time to sit and relax in the nearby seating area.  Additionally, the Sports Centre also has a Coffee Shop,  which serves snacks, drinks and cakes.


Subway is the recent addition on campus which everyone is loving at the moment. Pop in for a sandwich, cookie and drink on the cheap! Or if Subway isn’t your thing, right next door is the SU shop. The SU sells meal deals, from sandwiches to sushi, they have a variety of food choices, including vegetarian and vegan options. There is also chocolate and crisps on standby if you fancy something more snacky. The food options are very similar in Mccolls, located in the hub.  


If you need something to warm you up in this cold weather, both  Waters Edge and Sages sell hot food.  Other options include freshly prepared sandwiches, paninis, wraps and baguettes, jacket potatoes with a choice of hot and cold fillings, and a selection of pizzas, soups and salads! Which Café Rewind in the Faculty of Health and Social Care also sell!


If you fancy dinner and a show The Red Bar is the place for you, especially if you love Pizza! Located in the art centre, the bar is known for their pizza and fun atmosphere.


Lastly, the SU Bar offers a wide choice of refreshing drinks, stocking both alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages, with a range of burgers, pizzas, hot dogs and paninis available until 9pm! Additionally, next door is Nom Takeaway which serves chips, chicken nuggets, etc, until late.


Thanks for reading this post, I hope you enjoyed this post and found it somewhat useful.
Until next time!

Film /Show of the day: BoJack Horseman (2014-)

Online Resources!

Technology is a must for any student. From Wikipedia to Neil’s Toolbox, technology is a great help. So that’s why today I will be talking about a few online resources that I’ve used for my studies, which hopefully you can get some use out of!


Google Drive is my go-to resource when writing essays. Google Drive is an online storage space, where you can create word documents, presentations, graphs, etc. The drive is amazing for group work as you can share folders and documents, which everyone can type on at the same time! Additionally, work saves automatically so if your computer crashes or you accidentally close the web browser, it’s not the end of the world!  


If you do any course which involves screenwriting at any point such as film and tv production or creative writing, celtx will be your number one friend! When writing a script there’s a lot of dos and don’t when it comes to formatting. However, celtx is an online resource which does all the formatting for you, letting you release your creative and not worry about all the little details. I first used celtx in a screenwriting module in first year, and haven’t stopped using it to write scripts since. And the best part about celtx is that the basic account, which is all that you need is completely free! Additionally, you can use the online version of celtx or downloaded celtx to your laptop!  


Next up is Neil’s Toolbox. Neil’s toolbox is a website that helps you generator references for books, e-mails, journals and websites! All you have to do is input the information, and the rest is done for you, ready for you to copy and paste into your bibliography. Which makes referencing a whole lot easier!


And finally, there is one very important resource to mention which is Blackboard. Blackboard is a learning platform which works on an array of different devices, as well as having an app! Blackboard is important to note as all your lecture powerpoints and information are stored on there. Blackboard is also important as it is where you can find your module handbooks and Turnitin, when you’ve done an essay!


Thanks for reading my post, I hope you found it somewhat useful. Feel free to comment any topic ideas you’d like to hear.
Until next time!  

Film /Show of the day: Hocus Pocus (1993)

The Benefits on Campus

Hey all! Hope you’re doing well and are having an enjoyable ending to your October.

One of the things that I loved about living on campus last year was the benefits that come with doing so. There are so many different amazing things about the campus that make it both excellent for studying, and also beautiful and calming during stressful times.

Edge Hill Library

The Edge Hill Library is an amazing asset to the University. Not only does it have any book or journal you could need for your work, but the help services there are amazing and the team work really hard to ensure you never have trouble with the services and your work. There are also rooms you can book out so that you can study with more focus. There are both group and individual study rooms available for booking so there’s something for both types of work.

I have done a post about the library before, which gives you more in depth details, and I have linked it below:

Edge Hill Library- The Font of all Knowledge

They are currently building a new and better library, so the future looks even more beneficial for the students of Edge Hill!

Edge Hill Sport

Edge Hill has wonderful sports facilities that are available to the students. The first thing on offer is the gym- there is some amazing equipment, and you can even create an account on the MyWellness app that the equipment links to to keep track of your progress and your normal exercise regimes, which is perfect for if you’re training! There is also a Swimming Pool, and courts in which you can play sports such as badminton and football. Anything you could want to do, sport-wise, the Edge Hill Sport centre has it all!

The Views

One of the amazing things about Edge Hill that a lot of other campuses don’t have, is that the campus is absolutely beautiful. From the two calming ponds, to the little beach that the campus has, in any weather the Edge Hill University campus is lovely to walk around, especially during the exam period or if you just need a break from life.

SU Bar and the Venue

Edge Hill has something every University needs- its own club! The Student Union Bar hosts all kind of fun events, including the Wednesday Social night, and the new Frat House event every Thursday, that has had guests like the Beast from the TV show the Chase, Kem from Love Island and next week we’ve even got Dappy coming to the event! The Freshers’ Week events also happen at the SU Bar, so it’s really the place to be!

Takeaway and Subway

One thing that every student loves is food… and we have the best places to go! Edge Hill has its own takeaway, which makes some amazing food, especially for if you want to treat yourself to some guilty pleasure food. We also just had the amazing addition of a Subway branch to our University!

These are just some of the many things that are great about being on or near the campus, there are so many more too! If you have any questions about anything in this post go ahead and pop me a comment below 🙂

Autumn Fieldwork in Illinois

Dried biomass in pre-weighed bags.

Over the past few weeks, I’ve been given more responsibilities in the field and more exciting work to do! Whereas before I was helping with the vital job of weeding, and watering, the time has come for us to collect data from our prairie restoration project. To assess how well different plots of mixed species are performing, we need to collect, then dry and weigh, biomass. Since the project leader has now taken maternity leave, I have been left in charge of this next phase of the project.

I’ve taken to cycling down west to the prairie in the mornings, but this becomes an issue when returning biomass to the lab – I currently have to rely on the cars of others. Outside the arboretum, I’ve noticed that a car seems like a necessity in the United States, since public transport is not widespread, yet everything here is spread wide apart! The country seems scaled up compared to the European ones I’ve visited, everything is just somehow further away…

Map of the West side of The Morton Arboretum, showing rough location of A: My house and B: Prairie Restoration Project

In the week following my last American entry, I moved house, since I had accidentally been placed in the wrong one for my first few weeks – it’s smaller, but I am the only one currently living there, plus, the WiFi is stronger!

The lab meetings on Thursdays have also become a book club, we’ve been reading Improbable Destinies by Jonathan B. Losos, and we’re now about four chapters in. So far it’s been very engaging and has included some interesting ideas about the commonality of convergent evolution yet also the randomness of evolution, with compelling arguments on either side.

On the weekend before last, I took the train down to see Molly again, and this time visited her home in “The Boonies,” to check out the Spoon River Valley Scenic Drive. Although most food along the drive wasn’t vegan, I did manage to eat an obscene amount of popcorn and a delicious apple cider slushie. I also had a “lemon shakeup” a still, sugary lemon drink. Still on my American Bucket List is trying American lemonade, which is different from the lemonade back across the bond that is synonymous with Sprite or 7-Up. After driving back to Molly’s home, we cooked up some funnel cake made with soy milk, which was enough to induce a food coma combined with everything else from that morning. We also visited the Wildlife Prairie Park – it harbours rescued animals and plants native to the area, as well as telling the history of the area. It was a bit windy that day, as the night before we had been under a tornado warning – exciting times!

Edge Hill’s Learning Services!

So here we are. Last week I blogged about all the different support and services Edge Hill has to offer except one: Learning services. So that is what we will be talking about today, hope you enjoy!


The learning service team is located in the library. The team can help with an array of issues. An example of help they can offer is helping you work the wifi on campus!


An important team within learning services is the disability support team!  The disability support teams provide a range of specialist study skills support, to help you develop strategies that you can use in your studies and other areas of your life.

Some areas of help they offer include planning essays, time management, organisational skills, note-taking techniques, reading strategies, referencing,  proofreading strategies, and more! The disability team can help you apply for DSA, which as someone who went through this process, I can say for certain that the team are wonderful when it comes to giving help and advice!


Learning service can also teach you how to use the library catalogue. The online library catalogue works similarly to google scholar, as you can type in keywords to find your subject, however, with this resource you have full access to the books and readings.

The catalogue has both online and physical readings, which is great in case you can’t make it down to campus as you can narrow your search to online texts and look through those.
Additionally, you can look and see if the book you want is currently available at the library and reserve books to collect later at the library! There are also computers stationed around the library dedicated solely to the catalogue.  


Learning services can also help with printing. There are printing and photocopying machines dotted around the entire library. They are all connected to one network so as soon as you click print you can log into any printer and print from there, minimising the queues of students waiting to use one printer. You can top up your printing credit at the learning services desk!


Thanks for reading this short but sweet blog post, if you have any topics you want to hear more about then make sure to comment!
Until next time!

Film /Show of the day: Scott Pilgrim vs. the World (2010)

Theatre in Liverpool and 96/27 Review!

Hey all! My last few posts have been around the topic of the performances you can see on campus at the lovely Arts Centre on Campus. I will link these below:

The Arts Centre Box Office and the Red Carpet Review!

Interview with the Red Carpet Cast: Employability and Edge Hill’s Future Opportunities

But one of the things I haven’t mentioned yet are the amazing opportunities within Liverpool to experience all kinds of the best and bravest theatre and music! There’s the Liverpool Empire Theatre, which hosts the likes of War Horse and Circus of Horrors, the Philharmonic Hall, which hosts the likes of Islands in the Stream and Jake Bugg, and even more. One of the best things about Edge Hill being close to Liverpool, a well known city in Britain, is that you get to involve yourself in this amazing culture.

Not only are there these shows for those interested in theatre, but there are also always some amazing independent performances going on too from local creatives. I had the chance to see one of these today, so I wanted to give you an idea of what is on offer. The performance I saw was Rachael Mutch’s 96/27; a harrowing account of the Hillsborough Disaster, its effects on the survivors and the media coverage, through the eyes of one of the survivors.

 

Mutch brilliantly used a mixture of video projection of the footage from the day the disaster happened and dialogue based on a real life experience of being in the standing area of the grounds where the awful crushing happened. The whole performance was very immersive; firstly, the performance took part in one of the changing rooms in the sports centre of the University of Liverpool, a very small space with astro turf on parts of the floor and scarves hanging from the hooks around the room, which made it feel very personal, everything Mutch said felt very direct and made the experiences she was explaining hit me ten times harder. There were moments were she would hand scarves to the audience or hold a hand, and the atmosphere this created and influenced was one of the strongest I’ve seen in a performance.

One of the things I loved so much about the performance was how it focused on not just what happened on 15th April 1989, but the media and its impact on the survivor, quoting and projecting some of the disrespectful things that were said about the Liverpool fans at the match and showing the anger the survivor feels at being portrayed in such a way across the UK. Mutch also focused on the effects of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder that followed the survivor she was giving a voice to and probably a lot of those who were caught in the events that took place that day, putting across the important message to the audience that, although these survivors weren’t physically hurt in the way that those who sadly died were, they were and might still be mentally suffering.

96/27 is an excellent biographical piece which focuses on a local event that took 27 years to get the justice for the victims that it deserved. Performances like this are what create much needed and important conversations in those who see them and in society. One of the amazing things about this particular performance, also, is that Mutch is a graduate of Edge Hill and actually developed this from her dissertation piece, so it goes to show that the work here at Edge Hill really does lead to amazing places.