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Deciding to go to university was a difficult decision for me. I was torn between completing an apprenticeship or attending university, however after viewing my five choices I knew Chester was the one for me. The first deciding factor had to be how accommodating and friendly all staff members were, especially since I mistakenly mixed up my open days and came a week earlier. The staff planned a tour for me, introduced me to the Programme Leader and organised accommodation viewings. I was incredibly impressed so I decided to come back the following week where I was even more delighted with my experience. It was refreshing to know that each of the tutors were specialists in their subjects and they had prior accounting experience. The final deciding factor had to be that I could imagine myself living in Chester because of the beautiful city.

As the first year started my nerves kicked in and all my thoughts ran wild; am I going to make friends? Will I like my course? Will I be able to keep up with all my deadlines? However, within a couple of months these worries disappeared! Lecturers organised different team activities during Induction Week, allowing us to meet a variety of people from different courses. We were even given the opportunity to change our course to ensure we were completely happy and find the course that best suited us. They supported us in the transition from A-Levels to university, ensuring we had the right knowledge and skills to succeed in our assignments and exams. I made amazing friends, enjoyed my course, achieved good grades and ended up really loving my first year!

Second year was my favourite! I was comfortable with the city, I was living in a shared house with my friends and I got a taster of what my life would be like after university. I was able to experience this through one of my modules, Work Based Learning, where I worked at the Chester Council as a Transactional Service Assistant. As I had completed prior work experiences I knew I wanted to become an Accountant, therefore I decided to use Work Based Learning as an opportunity to explore different options with my degree. I couldn’t have asked for a better placement! I had the chance to work within various departments and meet a range of different people who gave me valuable advice for my time after university. As I became familiar with Chester, I decided to explore further out and go to larger cities such as Manchester and Liverpool which were both 45 minutes away. I had amazing times visiting the cities but was glad to call Chester my university home.

For my final year, I decided I wanted to challenge myself, therefore I put myself forward for Faculty of Business and Management and School Mentoring. These were just a few of the opportunities that were available to us amongst the various courses and internships on offer.

Being part of the faculty was really eye-opening as I was more involved with decisions being made for Queen’s Park Campus. I met the Dean and different Faculty members, where I was able to share ideas and concerns from students to enhance their university experience. I also took advantage of other services which the University of Chester provided, such as application preparation, including psychometric testing and mock interviews. Mock Interviews were the most beneficial for me, as I struggle with them the most during the application process. However, having practice allowed me to feel more comfortable and confident for the real ones. Although my third year was incredibly challenging, juggling assignments, exams and extracurricular activities, it was definitely the most rewarding and it made me more excited about my life after university.

University was the best decision I ever made and looking back I was so silly to even contemplate the decision not to attend university! Not only did I get an amazing qualification, I learnt amazing life skills, met amazing people and had the best tutors, who inspired me to achieve my goals. After discussing with my tutors and employers that the University introduced me to, I have decided to work towards becoming a Charted Accountant. I am incredibly appreciative of my time at the University of Chester as you’re not just a number, you are a name, so I am very glad I chose University of Chester.

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