My name is Melissa Donovan, and I’m in my final year at Edge Hill University. I study Criminology and Criminal justice and have loved my experience at Edge Hill.

Dissertation time..!

This week is dedication to dissertation week! My dissertation has to be 10,000 words. That may sound like a lot but once you get to third year it is not at all. I have wrote 3,000 and 4,000 essays in a couple of days on one subject so now writing 10,000 is going to be a struggle!

This week is all about planning, researching and lots and lots of reading around my subject. I have 6 weeks for the dissertation due date so i need to get cracking. Dissertations are the final piece of work, at the end of your degree to show your tutors how much you have learned throughout the degree and how you can apply that to your chosen subject. Some people may find it stressful and hard but i am really looking forward to writing it and showing my tutors what i am capable of…it is all very exciting.

Third year has been my favorite year of my degree it is hard work i am constantly busy but it is enjoyable and keeps me on my toes. The real hard work is about to commence…hello work…goodbye social life haha!

Bye for now 🙂

The End is Near..!

Last week was a very stressful yet productive week. I had an essay due on Monday and an essay due Friday so that week was hectic!!

I start essay planning around 2/3 weeks before essay is due. I tend to write up a brief plan of what the essay will entail, by reading around the subject and the questions , i then take the plan to the module tutor to discuss in what ways the plan is good and how it can be made better.

Once essay are handed in there is a four week turn around date before you receive the marks back. I feel i put a lot of time and effort into them so hopefully that will reflect in my marks!!

Wish me luck 🙂

Who knew…

A few days ago I came across a you tube video which moved me both emotionally and inspirationally.

Through studying Criminology I have studied crime not only on a local level but also on a international level. The study of international violence looking at Genocide in Rwanda and Uganda to child soldiers across Africa has been a favourite of mine. Studying crime on an international level has allowed me to develop my own personal opinion, and has gave me a greater perceptive on the deep impact crime has and how crimes such as those occurring across Africa go unnoticed. This video proves that it is not just the state that can make changes but when people come together with an idea… anything is possible.

The you tube video is called KONY 2012. It is a short video campaign by a small American charity called Invisible Children. The video aims to make Joseph Kony a man who has been recruiting child soldiers for over 26 years, famous, not to celebrate him, but to raise support for his arrest and set a precedent for international justice.

The video has received over 1 million views and counting. It is a great way to make a difference and to spread the word of what is happening to innocent children in third world countries. Take a look at the video and see what you think.



Today is International Women’s Day (IWD) 🙂

Annually on the 8th of March thousands of events are held throughout the world to inspire women and celebrate their achievements. A global network connects women from all around the world to celebrate this fantastic day. The day symbolises the oppression and inequality that have faced women for thousands of years and reminds us all of the great improvements that have been made.

Although, women are still not paid equally to that of their male counterparts, women still are not present in equal numbers in business or politics, and globally women’s education, health and the violence against them is worse than that of men. IWD allows to us to celebrate the positives and the impact women have made throughout history.

We can all make a difference, do your bit to ensure that the future for girls is bright, equal, safe and rewarding. Make everyday International Women’s Day!!

Spring is in the Air : )

Yesterday was the first sign that spring is on the way 🙂

The sun was shining, the campus was buzzing with students gathered together chatting, having lunch on the grass and just generally in a happy, upbeat mood. The sun always brings out the best in people and it definitely brings out the best in the campus. The sun captures the essence of the buildings and the beautiful scenery in which our campus is situated.

No matter how much work you have or how bad your day is going, sitting on the grounds of the campus in the sun always helps. I’m excited for this summer on campus, the buzz in the air is exciting and it is just lovely sitting on the grass with a good book chilling out!!

The business building in all its glory 🙂


Is Higher Education worth the huge amount of debt?

With all this talk of student loans increasing, £25,000 worth of debt when you finish (which lets face it is the deposit needed for a two up two down these days) is Higher Education actually worth it?

Well as a third year student due to graduate this year and who missed the tuition  fee increase (smiley face) university is the best experience for any young adult, to go through, if I was just entering HE with the huge increase in debt would I even consider going into HE?? Hell yes!!

Meeting amazing sometimes wacky people, entering campus with silly traffic wardens making your drive all the way to the back car park so you have to walk a treck in torrential rain to your lecture where you are the last in and have to do the walk of shame only to want to sit next to your friend so have to breathe in for an unhealthy period of time to shuffle past everyone and look like an idiot. YES… Hell YES….

University is the key to your whole life, the beginning of an adventure you cannot even dream to imagine, where you will go, who you will meet and where you might end up. Higher Education in this dreary day and age, no matter how much of the cost is the beginning to unlocking your intelligence and career path no one can put a price on.

With website like martins money tips, voucher codes, NUS Extra cards, and 0% credit cards we can all help ourselves in times of need and save a penny here and there and come on shops like Home Bargains and Pound land are Aladdin’s caves of bargains!! Whether you come from low income background or from the world’s richest, university can be for everyone if you are willing to take that leap of faith and the first step onto the yellow brick road of your career. As Jessie Jay would say “forget about the price tag”, apply, enrol and have the time of your life worry about the debt later and remember you don’t pay it back until your earing over £22k per year!


Criminology, Law and Social Sciences Open Day!

Hello again.

Yesterday was the Criminology, Law and Social Sciences open day for students who have received an offer from Edge Hill to start in September 2012.

It was all very exciting, for me, as it was my first day working with the student guides who guide students around the campus, show them the accommodation facilities, campus facilities and are there to answer any questions. It was very exciting for the prospective students who attended as they had the chance to bring their families and discover all that Edge Hill has to offer.

If you were unable to attend the open day but would like to find out more about the Faculty of Arts and Sciences follow this link http://www.edgehill.ac.uk/fas/

I found it very interesting talking to prospective students wanting to come to Edge Hill. The campus has so much to offer with an amazing library (which is my second home at the moment), the sports facilities, the new HUB which has an amazing food outlet open all day and a Starbucks. I felt honoured to be a student at Edge Hill as the students and families I spoke to where impressed with the university and the all the facilities it has to offer.

I spoke to some students who were applying for my course Criminology and Criminal Justice and joint students taking Criminology with Law or Criminology with Childhood and Youth studies. It was lovely to speak to them and find out what made them chose the course, and for them to ask me any questions or to answer any concerns they had.

Lots of talk about moving away from home for the first time and tuition fees, where what I found where the main concerns for students and their families. Moving away from home can be a daunting experience, but an amazing one that will enhance your university experience either living on campus or in Ormskirk town centre. I commute from Liverpool which takes 2 trains but only takes around 50 minutes door to door which isn’t  bad and saves me a lot of money on petrol costs.

The next Edge Hill open day is in March, I look forward to seeing some of you there to answer any of your questions : )

Thailand here i come : )

Soooo… as you may have already guessed, i have been accepted as a volunteer with VESL in Thailand.http://www.vesl.org

I am so happy I have been chosen to take part in this amazing challenge and i can’t wait to begin my adventure : ) I have be appointed to Thailand for 6 week leaving late July. My graduation is week commencing the 16th of July so i am guessing i will be leaving around the 25th.

As VESL are a UK charity you are asked to fund raise £900 towards the cost of your trip, this covers –

– hotel for the first night in Chiang Rai + accommodation with host during project
– transport to project (including internal flights)
– accommodation for the duration of the project
– food budget
– comprehensive travel and medical insurance including 24 emergency medical assistance line throughout project
– liabilities insurance to provide cover whilst working in schools
– backup and support from our local in-country co-ordinator / representative

I have lots of ideas to fund raise the costs and will be planning them over the next few months, it is all very exciting : )

This opportunity through Edge Hill  happens once in a life time, i am volunteering with a well known charity through the university which gives myself and my parents peace of mind as there are some company’s out there who ask for money upfront, who are not supportive, and most importantly safe. VESL have 24 hour back up service in case of emergency and i will be with a buddie (another EHU student) so i am excited to meet them : )

I am grateful to Edge Hill for this opportunity and i am going to make it my best adventure so far.

Bye for now!

What a week!

So, last week i had a very busy yet productive week.

I recently applied to become a volunteer over seas teaching English. It has always been a dream of mine to teach abroad and make a difference in any way i can.

The company  i registered with was through the university it is a registered charity called VESL http://www.vesl.org/. Through Edge Hill University they are recruiting volunteers for placements in Thailand, Sri Lanka and India. Volunteering abroad is an incredible way to stand out from the crowd it will enhance your future employment prospects and enable employers to see that you have developed the key skills whilst teaching English. Volunteering in any area can be useful when completing application forms and during job interviews to illustrate the skills you have developed through volunteering.

I had my interview Wednesday the 31st January, in which i had to bring a teaching object that would help me teach English over seas. I took in a junior world atlas as a visual aid as many of the children may be unable to speak any English at all, the atlas is very colourful and has lots of pictures. I used the atlas to describe  how i would show the children where about England is in the world, show them the English flag and pictures of England. Teaching English is not just about the language but it is about the country itself and giving children a small insight to England will help them to learn.

I am hoping to hear back from VESL sometime this week. I am very excited and hope the enthusiasm and drive i have for volunteering showed in my interview.

Wish me luck : )

Ello, Ello, Ello.

Hello and welcome to my very first blog for Edge Hill University : )

My name is Melissa Donovan and I am a third year Criminology and Criminal Justice student. The opportunity to become a blogger for my University is a fantastic opportunity for me to write about my course, the university itself and my experience of student life so far.

Over the next up and coming months I will be writing about many aspects of my course and the university which will give prospective students an insight to student life at Edge Hill.

Being in my final year, the pressure of work is really on with assignment deadlines, exam revision, dissertation and also looking at post graduate opportunities, there are just so many things that third years have to go through and I will be giving  details of my own experience and how I am getting on.

You can also follow me on twitter @MelEHU to ask any questions.