I’ve Just Noticed

The next open event at Edge Hill is on the same day that the new season of the Premier League kicks off! Yes, it’s on the 18th of this month, but please don’t let that put you off. In fact, the event takes place between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m., so you’ll still be able to watch Liverpool play West Brom afterwards. You can find out more about the open event here http://www.edgehill.ac.uk/events/2012/08/18/open-event, and I recommend you come along to get a taster of the great campus and also ask some questions about your course. You can find out more about Liverpool FC on their website (I’m sure it’s already in your favourites, so I won’t give you a link ūüėõ ).

Speaking of getting to know your courses, my next post will be a look at more best bits from English and Creative Writing, so don’t miss that!

Community

I was at my graduation a little over a week ago, and me and my family had a really great time. Don’t worry though, this isn’t going to be a post dedicated to that. Since you guys are still in the process of coming to Edge Hill, I know there are fewer things farther from your mind than that! So why mention it then? Well, because it reminded me of all the great things about the university. The day of celebration was like a small representation of the awesomeness I’ve been lucky enough to have been a part of over the three years, and I hope¬† you get to share in it soon too.

One thing I always look forward to at an Edge Hill event is the hospitality. They put on a great range of foodstuffs from sandwiches (better than the one in the picture!) to chicken skewers to doughnuts and much much more, almost making the catering better than the event! The staff at Edge Hill that help out at these functions are, as they are in any capacity at the university (tutors definitely included), extremely friendly and supportive and make you feel so welcome. That’s something you’ll feel the benefits of very soon when you go to the Freshers’ Fair, it really is a second-to-none experience at a second-to-none university.

Speaking of facilities, though, another thing I’m really missing about not still studying at Edge Hill is the way the facilities are so helpful to learning. Whether it be the numerous quality cafes around the place for a caffeine pick-me-up, or the great food bars around tempting you with a delicious and nutritious lunch, the overall feeling you get is one of freedom; having every option open to you whenever you want.

So the post has mainly centred around the catering facilities, yes, but it still goes to show what a lot Edge Hill has to offer you. All you need when you come here is get involved, check out some of these events (visiting authors are always a pleasure to go and see, maybe you’ll¬†get your book signed while you’re there) and have one of the best experiences of your life.

Don’t Be A Stranger

So as the uni year draws to a close for more and more students at Edge Hill, what’s going to happen now? Is the university closing its doors, battening down the hatches and generally going into hibernation? NO! Of course it’s not, Edge Hill is still very much alive with activity, and you might want to come and experience it.

Whatever stage you’re in for applying to university, still¬†come and have a look. If you’re unsure where you want to go to study, then there’s really nothing like a visit to inform you. Not only do you get more information on your course, but also you’ll get a flavour of the campus and Ormskirk. When I was applying, I even came here after making my¬†choices¬†with UCAS, partly because I liked the place so much but also to familiarise myself¬†with it a bit more.¬†Here’s a link to the open day page on the Edge Hill website with dates and booking information http://www.edgehill.ac.uk/undergraduate/events/opendays.

There are¬†other reasons to come and visit too, such as going to the Rose Theatre, Edge Hill’s on-campus theatre. This is a great way to get the Edge Hill experience without being on an open day, you’ll get to see the campus and test out some of the facilities, all while being entertained. Can’t be bad, right? I’ve got my eye on an upcoming production by Edge Hill students called Wonderland: The Trials of Alice which is on the 25th and 26th of this month. It’s completely open to the public, as the Short Cuts cinema is too, so don’t be shy! Come down and have a good time ūüôā Here’s a link to the Rose Theatre website for more details and opportunities to see something amazing http://www.edgehill.ac.uk/rosetheatre/whatson.

So, what are you waiting for? Make sure that after you visit you come back soon!

The Start of an Era

Last Friday saw my final lesson as a BA student at Edge Hill. It was quite a poignant moment –¬†realising that your three years’ study is coming to an end and that you and all the friends you’ve made will all be moving on. Rather than being sad, though, we had a great send-off and kept up a Creative Writing tradition: the end of year reading.

As tutor Robert Sheppard pointed out, this is a form of publication (i.e. making public) of¬†your creative work, and a fantastic opportunity to show your skills. It took place in the newly refurbished Hale Hall (you can see it looking all new and sparkly in the background of the picture there) and there was a reasonable turnout too, which doesn’t help the nerves, but the more the merrier when it comes to sharing your work.

The past two years, the reading has been grouped according to the year you’re in, but this time first, second and third years were all there to listen, and some to perform. Mostly people read poetry, but there was a short story and even some music, which just goes to show how diverse the range of chances is at Edge Hill.

It’s not compulsory to read out at this event, so don’t let it put you off if you don’t feel comfortable, you can just sit back and enjoy the other performances. As you can see by the picture (apologies, I know I’m no oil painting!), I couldn’t resist reading out one of my pieces (from my own writing, rather than class work) and, as always, the reception was very supportive.

I bet you’re itching to give it a go, aren’t you? Well, all you need to do is come to Edge Hill and you’ll get the chance!

‘The Scousest Day on Earth’

Edge Hill has a great reputation for its sports degrees, but you don’t have to be doing one to take advantage of any of the many opportunities for enjoying sport around Ormskirk. I for one love a bit of football, it must be said, and yesterday saw the Liverpool vs Everton FA cup semi-final. The atmosphere in Ormskirk is always great on match day, whoever is playing, but the rivalries inside Liverpool and even with Manchester teams translate clearly for Ormskirkians. It happened that my team won, but in any of the many places you can watch it about the town the buzz is always great, even for neutral fans.

Yesterday saw another important national sporting event take place just a few minutes away from Ormskirk in Aintree. I am, of course, talking about the Grand National. It is not just the event itself that transforms Ormskirk. The preceeding days too have a buzz that is unlike any other, especially Ladies’ Day. I was on my way into Liverpool the other day and it’s like a fever that sweeps the area, the trains are packed with expectant men and women all having a good time. I wrote recently about the buzz on campus at Edge Hill around the time of the elections, and the energy in Ormskirk at this time reminds me of that:¬†anticipation, enjoyment¬†and warmth.

I should just explain, the title of this post comes from a conversation I overheard yesterday. With so much pride in Merseyside around this time of national sporting importance, someone proclaimed it to be ‘the Scousest day on earth.’ That’s a debatable thing to say, perhaps, but it was certainly one of the most fun!

Success!

Great news – one of my poems is going to published in Edge Hill’s Question Mark, a magazine showcasing students’ poetry and even photography. I’m really happy to finally be published but hopefully it won’t end there! There are many more ways to be published at Edge Hill and I’m hoping to take full advantage.

If you’re into writing poetry, there’s also the Rhiannon Evans award for students showing promise in writing poems. If you win, there’s even a cash prize of ¬£500, which isn’t to be sneezed at by any means.

Of course, some people prefer fiction and they are well catered for too. There are a couple of short story prizes, one of which is the Jo Powell crime fiction prize that I aim to enter soon. It was set up in memory of Jo, who I’ve had the privilege to be taught by for two years. MA students can enter this one too, so there’s quite a bit of competition, but what better way to challenge yourself?

What you’ll also find inspiring and supportive is the facebook group that students can join, where links to competitions are regularly posted, along with notable writers’ work, industry updates and more.

So I’ve had a taste of success, but I want this to springboard me on to greater things. When you come to Edge Hill, you too will have all these opportunities. The atmosphere really couldn’t be more encouraging and, potentially, lucrative. What more could you want?

The Big Buzz

When you come to uni, there’s one thing you’ll realise very quickly; your campus lives and breathes with student activity. Often you’ll walk through your gates and you’ll be hit with a buzz, a palpable electricity in the air, permeating clothes and touching skin.

Election time around Edge Hill is unrivalled for the atmosphere it creates. There are posters everywhere, representatives organizing and hosting awareness events (the new HUB building is a great space for this, pretty much everyone’s passing through a few times a week) and sometimes free lollies (who said bribery doesn’t work ūüėČ )!

The real point of blogging about the elections for those thinking about coming to Edge Hill is to get you thinking about the opportunities you will get here. Have you got aspirations to be a team leader, events manager, even politician? Well then uni-level politics is a great place to start. When you come to writing a CV, employers will snap you up because you’ve shown good communication skills with your team/potential voters, worked as part of a team, shown leadership skills and so much more.

And hey, maybe you’re more like me and would prefer not to be in the spotlight? Well, any student here can take part in the elections. Not only do you get the chance to change the university for yourselves and others, but you also get the chance to develop your own skills, views and awareness.

If that doesn’t get you buzzing, nothing will!

Film Festivitites

¬†Last Wednesday saw the 49th Annual Ann Arbor Film Festival come to the Rose Theatre at Edge Hill. I can’t pretend that I understood all of the films, some of them being quite obscure and ‘arty’, but that didn’t stop me from having a really good time. The night opened with a film (called ‘Nulepsy’ if I remember correctly) featuring a naked old man on a skateboard and ended with a Chinese animation that… how do I put this? Let’s just say a frog with a human face was singing pop music (‘Hand Soap’). So the festival certainly wasn’t lacking any variety, and also some rather trippy visuals!

The story of getting the festival to the university is interesting in itself. One man’s vision to share the festival with a UK audience has taken four years, and certain changes of employer, to be realized. Better late than never, I say! The good news is that he hopes to carry on supporting the festival, and even wants to see an Edge Hill student win one of the prizes some day. I think that’s a fantastic idea and¬†I’ll certainly want to pop into the Rose Theatre, even when I’m no longer a student, to watch.

If you want to know any more about the film festival itself, click on this link: http://aafilmfest.org/49/index.php/events/category/animation

If you want to know more about the Rose Theatre on Edge Hill’s campus, take a look at this: http://www.edgehill.ac.uk/rosetheatre¬†That’ll tell you more about the types of thing you’ll be able to enjoy when you come here. They’ve also got a facebook page, so ‘like’ that and you’ll automatically get updates.

So Many Opportunities!

Just in case you haven’t already heard, Jennifer Saunders has just payed a visit to Edge Hill. If you ever thought that Edge Hill was the kind of uni that only invited boring, crusty old academics to whom you cannot relate, you are wrong my friend!

She gave two talks last Friday: one in the morning (aimed at Creative Writing students like yours truly) and another in the evening (which was a more general talk).

Unfortunately I had lessons in the morning, so couldn’t go to hear her pearls of wisdom, but the point is not what I get out of it, the point is that this university is a proactive one. It literally can’t stop giving students (and the rest of the community) opportunities to learn and have a good time.

The problem, it seems, is that there’s so much to do but¬†too little time!

Newness

Mendaliv's Example ScreenplayHappy New Year everybody! Here’s hoping you have a lucky year and also make your own luck as much as possible.

I’m a strong believer in making your own luck. The harder you work, the more luck you deserve and, often, the more luck you get. This year Edge Hill is giving Creative Writing and Media students a fantastic chance to make their own luck. Basically,¬†if we want to we can¬†write a ten-minute short script which will get handed over to the Media department. If any of the students there¬†like the look of it, they can make it into a film.

It’s my dream to write for the screen, and this is an absolutely fantastic opportunity. Not only is it great fun, but if by some lucky chance my script is made into a film and noticed by someone in the business… Well, I guess I’ll have to start dreaming some even bigger and better dreams!