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Finding out about your family and where you come from is always something special. Discovering that your great great Grandfather was a world war two veteran and spent over three years in a prisoner of war camp in Japan is something else. So, when my nan rang me one day telling me she had an idea for my blog, I was all ears. After sitting for hours, flicking through photo albums and death certificates, I decided that I needed to tell the story of my great great Grandfather Charles Thomas Gunton. Here is the life and legacy of a ww2 hero… I’ve decided to write everything I learnt about Charles Gunton in the form of an interview with my nan. After all, I discovered everything I knew about him from my nan and I wanted to keep some of her words alive. Who was Charles Thomas Gunton and what was…

Almost 3 years ago I moved away from my hometown and settled in Manchester to study Drama at the University of Manchester. Moving to a new city has taught me a lot. I learnt how to cook, clean, fend for myself. I learned to balance both my work and my personal life and it wasn’t always easy. However, I decided to move back to my hometown after university to start the next chapter of my life. I also never returned home for three months during each academic year at university and so it feels like a lifetime ago that I have lived in my hometown. It has now been almost two months since I returned home and so I thought I would share my experience of moving back to my hometown and all the things that I have learnt. Everything seems smaller When I returned to my hometown, everything seemed…

Travelling is a lot more accessible than it was fifty years ago and we only have the internet to thank for that. More people are being educated on working holiday visas by social influencers and searching online means you are more likely to find cheap flights. However, becoming educated on travel is not the only reason that backpacking is increasingly popular. Having a decent laptop is resulting on people using an online presence to work their way around the world. With a little bit of creativity, there are many ways you can utilise the internet to your advantage. Here is just 5 businesses that allow you to travel the world.  YouTube Uploading travel vlogs onto YouTube is one way a lot of backpackers have made enough money to continue their adventures around the globe. After establishing a following on YouTube and other social networking sites such as Instagram, travel vloggers…

Studying Drama at The University of Manchester has been one of the most challenging experiences of my life. That being said, it has also shown me where exactly I want my life to go. Studying any degree comes with it’s challenges. For example, finding a balance between earning money and studying whilst wanting to involve yourself in extra activities is almost impossible. However, the drama department at The University of Manchester really care about accommodating for your needs. This isn’t the case for other subjects. As a third year student – I can say I know a lot about the care the lecturers provide and the course itself. Continue reading if you would like to know the inns and the outs of studying Drama at The University of Manchester.

Drama

A lot of people from other subjects are led to believe that studying Drama is all Shakespeare performances and fancy dress. This is not the case. I hate acting and the thought of being placed on stage terrifies me. At The University of Manchester you will perform on stage at some point, however in most cases you can opt to not take a non-performing role. Since first year, I have not had to perform once. The Drama department at The University of Manchester understand that there is more to the subject than just acting.

The variety of modules you get to choose from are outstanding. One day you could be studying how to write a play, and the next you could be analysing Lord of the Rings and why it is considered a ‘fantasy film’. That’s right, there are a variety of film options to choose from. In fact, I study Drama and Screen Studies and haven’t looked at a play since first year. Don’t be put off with the assumption that studying Drama is all about the theatre – it isn’t.

The Department

In terms on how the Drama department compares to other subjects – there are no words. The moment I emailed my lecturer that I wanted to drop out of university, he was on the phone to me in minutes asking me if everything is okay. The next day he rearranged his schedule to meet with me to talk through why I was feeling the way I was. He cracked open a packet of biscuits and we talked for about an hour. In this time, not once did he try and persuade me to stay. Instead, it was sort of like a counselling session – a huge weight was lifted off my shoulders after that meeting. The Drama department go above and beyond to make you feel safe and welcome.

I know this is not the same for other subjects. For a course like Law, which has hundreds and hundreds of students, there just isn’t the time for lecturers to get to know each of their students. For some lecturers, their job ends after their last lecture. This isn’t the case for the Drama department. They take a huge role in the Drama related societies and often go and watch shows/ short films in their own time. They really care about your future!

Your Future

The Drama department at the University of Manchester really care about your future. They go above and beyond to try and encourage you to find what you enjoy and what you want to do with your life. If you’re thinking about continuing to study drama after your degree, every lecturer would be happy to answer any questions. Otherwise, if becoming a freelance actor/playwright/theatre practitioner takes your fancy, the University of Manchester hold so many workshops related to becoming a freelancer. They bring professionals in the field in to answer any questions students might have. In my second year, the drama department hosted a Q&A with actor Toby Jones as he is an alumni of the University of Manchester. It was surreal.

The Drama Society

The Drama society works very closely alongside the Drama department. This is one of the best things about studying drama at the University of Manchester. Any opportunities that the lecturers find out about they pass the information forward and the drama department are very understanding about upcoming performances and the impact it could have on attendance. Of course, you are required to attend everything regardless, but overall the lecturers are very understanding. They also tend to go and watch as many shows as they can. In my opinion, this is a testament to how much they care about their students as opposed to just getting good grades from them.

Anyway, I thought I needed to write this post after all the kindness the lecturers at the University of Manchester have shown me. University wasn’t for me, but that didn’t stop my lecturers trying to make it enjoyable

After living in Manchester for the best part of three years, it now feels like home. That being said, when I first moved to Manchester from Essex, I found the city very daunting. I have lived very central to the city centre and so it feels like the city never sleeps (not that I’m saying that Manchester is in anyway on the same scale as New York City). Fortunately for me, my partner is from Manchester and so when I met him, I became more familiar with what to do in Manchester. There are so many different areas in Manchester to explore. So, I’ve compiled a guide to living in Manchester for the people who are thinking of moving to the city. This way you won’t be as clueless as me on my first day in Manchester and you’ll know what to expect. Everyone is extremely friendly When I first…

Valentines Day brings romance and joy to people all over the world. For some reason, there is a whole day out of the year dedicated to couples which part of me thinks it’s cute. However, the more rational side of me believes that Valentines day is a big marketing strategy for restaurants and bars to get more money out of people (but that’s a post for another day). That being said, I can speak from experience that when it comes to this time of year, my mind begins to become blank of Valentine date ideas. This will be my second Valentines day with my partner and as we live in central Manchester, there are endless things to do. Sometimes it’s when there are too many options that my mind begins to not function. Do you live in the Manchester area and are lost for ideas of how to spend Valentines…

I have been writing a blog for less than a year and somehow I feel like I have had it much longer. It has become a huge part of my life and I love everything about it. I have met so many people through the blogging community and have learnt so much about: online marketing, graphic design, web design and social media. However I am yet to figure out HOW ON EARTH people use Pinterest! To all of you people out there who are getting millions of views on your Pinterest page each day, how? Are you magic? Anyway, as I’ve decided that 2019 is the year I take blogging more seriously, I thought I’d write a post all about why I started a blog and why I love it so much. My love for writing Ever since I can remember I have kept a diary of some sorts. I…

Student debt. It’s something we hear about all the time but no one is really talking about it. At school we are told the financial burden of what going to university/college actually means, however, as teenagers we ignore the warning calls as that is a problem for the future to bear. That was me three years ago. Now I am in my third year of university almost working full-time hours alongside a full time degree. I am wondering is all this debt worth it? I am going to discuss what being in debt is actually like and how it can affect your experience as a student. Different loans for different students In the U.K. the government will pay for everyones tuition fees and then the student will pay it all back out of his/her wage once they are earning over (i think) £21,000 a year. This figure tends to bounce…

It’s the time of year when many university students start to panic over what they are going to do when they graduate. Some people have known what they’ve wanted to do since before they even applied to university and if this is you then great. If this isn’t you and you are feeling very lost then do not worry. You are not alone. I will hopefully be graduating in the summer and although I’m no careers counsellor, I already know what I want to do when I graduate. So, I thought I’d pose three questions to get you started in thinking about what to do after university.

Did you enjoy university?

The first question you need to ask yourself is did you enjoy university? If you did, then this could potentially open up the opportunities of diving into post-graduate study. Was there one module that you felt so passionate about that you’d love to learn more? Then maybe you should study a masters degree devoted to it? However, enjoying university does not mean you are obliged to carry on with academic study. Perhaps you enjoyed the organisational side of a degree – in that case you could look for a career which requires these skills. Maybe you took an interest and participated in a society that could propel you into a career? A good example of this is a media or creative writing additional activity. Participating in these clubs will provide you with the skills needed for a career in them, and if you enjoyed it then maybe its a good enough reason to go for it.

If you did not enjoy university then it goes without saying that you definitely should not continue academia into post-graduate study. There is absolutely no point in spending your valuable time doing something that you do not enjoy. Life is too short, move on and if you do not know how to move on then literally get a job anywhere. That’s a good place to start. You never know you’ll enjoy something till you’ve tried it.

Are you a money oriented person?

The second question you should ask yourself is, are you a money oriented person? Sure everyone loves having money, but there are specific people out there that get addicted to earning money and get a buzz off earning more and more. If this is you then you should do whatever earns you the most money. If you want a steady job then apply to the jobs with the highest pay and greatest career progression. However, despite doctors and humanitarians doing more moral jobs, it tends to be business people and those who work in finance that earn the most. Perhaps you can use that as your starting point for job searching?

If you are not a money oriented person then maybe you want to help people? Working for a charity is always a good place to start your job hunt. Not only will you be earning money to pay the bills but your job will also be making a difference to peoples lives. Obviously careers such as being a doctor or a nurse are very rewarding however studying these areas at university probably means you know what you want to do after university. Therefore, why are you reading this post?

Are you travel oriented?

The last question I think you should ask yourself is are you travel oriented? I ask you this because travel and tourism is all I want to do after I graduate and it’s not particularly money oriented or an ethical career path. Unless of course you volunteer abroad doing conservation work or rebuilding homes for people, for example. If you’re like me and the idea of settling into the same career for the next twenty years terrifies you, then maybe you should pack a bag and get on a plane. Of course, it takes steps before you can go backpacking, money for example and those steps are what will determine what you do after university. Do you need to move back with your parents and get a job with lots of hours for you to be able to afford to travel? Would you rather get a job on a cruise ship or become a member of cabin crew? If you ask yourself these questions now, then you will have plenty of time to plan your next steps before you graduate.

I hope you have enjoyed reading this post and I hope it has brought you some what closer to figuring out what you want to do after university. If you would like to read more of mine be sure to subscribe to my blog and don’t forget to follow me on social media for updates on new content!

When another year comes around, there is always the usual people claiming, ‘New Year, New Me’ and for some reason others complain about this. They claim that each new year is the same and you don’t become a new person over night. I disagree with this. I think that the New Year is a perfect time to decide what positive changes you will make in your life. Sure, a lot of people don’t stick to them for very long. But a new year brings new opportunities and experiences and everything is so exciting in January – anything can happen. I predominantly started my blog so that in years to come, I could read back at my posts and reflect on them. So, I’ve decided to write a post explaining all what I am looking forward to in 2019. One day, I may reflect and see if any of this stuff I’m about to ramble on about actually happened.

Graduation

This year is the year that I graduate (hopefully) from university and it’s about time. If you’ve followed me for some time, you are probably aware that me and academia do not see eye to eye. I’m not going to get into all the reasons that I see university as a controlling and uncaring institution. If you would like to read more about that then you can do so in my post about why university is not for everyone.

Anyway, in May I will submit my last piece of academic work ever. This is a huge relief for me because doing something that you hate for so long can really take an impact on your mental health. You’re probably thinking: if you hated it that much, why didn’t you just quit? Well the short answer to this is I hate leaving anything half done at the best of times. Let alone something that I have spent thousands of pounds on. With the end of university brings freedom for me for many reasons…

Business

This year my partner will fully launch his web design and marketing business and I will be working on it with him. I am going to specialise in social media marketing and writing for SEO. Me and my partner are incredibly excited about this because this business will hopefully give us the freedom to work in any corner of the world. After working in retail for many years, it will be a huge relief to stop working for someone else and start working for myself. Instead of being paid by the hour, we will get to control how much money we earn by how much work we’re willing to do. I am so excited to learn a lot more about the online world in doing this. There is also another reason I am excited about this opportunity…

I am going home

After living away from Essex for three years, I will be back spending a significant amount of time back at home. Me and my partner will move there after my house contract ends and so I will get to spend some real time with my family and hopefully reconnect with some friends I lost contact with. This isn’t a permanent residence as me and my partner will be jetting off to Australia to begin our one year working holiday visa as soon as we have the funds for it. Regardless, I just cant wait to really be in a routine of seeing everyone again rather than spending a week at home every few months. This of course means I get to walk my two dogs every day, which I love more than anything.

Travel

My travel plans this year entirely depends on how much money I have in the bank. This year I begin saving for a year long trip to the other side of the world, however I always have the itchy feet to travel and so I don’t doubt there will be a holiday or city break somewhere between now and the end of the year. Me and Neil know that we will have a holiday this summer but we are still torn between places to visit. We know we want a summer holiday under the sun and close to a beach, however we don’t want the hotel to be in the middle of nowhere as we are very active people and love to be doing something all the time. I’m sure we will find something and so I will stuck at the gym till then working on my summer body

Anyway, those are the main things I am looking forward to in 2019. I’m sure new opportunities and experiences will find their way towards me but for now I am looking at the year with excitement but also nerves. Doesn’t everyone graduating university feel nervous about what life will throw their way next?

Comment below what your goals for 2019 are and what adventures you have in store – I’d love to hear them!