What are you doing here?!
The opinions and views expressed in this article are those of the author's and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of InQuire Media
Image: University of Kent
It’s the time of year in which all of you new students are arriving at the University of Kent for the very first time, and to all of you greetings and salutations. But I have to ask, what are you doing here? In the past year, the Complete University Guide has Kent falling five places to be the 49th best university in the country and the Guardian has UKC plummeting a whopping thirteen places to be the 35th. So, with this fall from grace over the past year alone, why did you choose Canterbury for the next three years?
Surely, based on the overriding opinions of those tasked with ranking universities, it surely cannot be the academic prowess that sees you make the journey. Perhaps the allure of the security provided by the many unconditional offers made by the university tempted you into settling for Kent, rather than chancing A-Level exam boards and the daunting prospect of clearing. If so, it’s an understandable mindset, but are you truly happy here? Have you not dreamt of attending a university that is hitting their stride more than the one you have ended up with?
If it wasn’t academic purposes that had you running around and furiously preparing to fend for yourself for the first time, did the accommodation catch your eye? As satire editor, I have spent large parts of this summer writing and joking about the various pitfalls of on-campus rooms. Despite heavy-handed exaggeration for comic effect, I do genuinely believe that there is nothing special about undergraduate halls, compared to what other universities provide. Besides this, it would be a bizarre choice to go to a university based on what your room is like. If you have, good luck finding somewhere in Hales Place that meets your princess-and-the-pea standards.
As somebody who is a year deep into their degree, I remember seeing nightlife as being quite important to a prospective fresher. Canterbury is hardly a ghost town in the evenings, but if you’re coming from London, as most seem to, it is certainly a step down. The on-campus nightclub, Venue, will serve to be a reasonable venue (if you’ll pardon the pun) for many a night out during your time in Canterbury. However, it has many flaws; for example, the seemingly small playlist of songs that quickly become tiresome. The city itself has a few clubs, like Chemistry, that are slightly better, but you are hardly spoiled for choice. I would strongly recommend going to the pub, The Cherry Tree, and having its signature cocktail, whose name cannot be repeated here.
You may have even come for some of the facilities. Templeman Library is to a very good standard and is well designed for studying with the large silent study spaces. But, at the end of the day, a library is a library. There are books and tables, every university will have one and it is hardly a deal breaker. The sports facilities are hardly Surrey or Loughborough, but they are pretty good for the non-elite level enthusiast; I can’t see somebody coming to Kent because of them.
So, after all of this, you are here anyway. Congratulations and good luck; but enlighten us and explain what you are doing here.