Posted in Extracurricular, student life, Uncategorized, Uni work, Written by Britt

Final Year Reflections

So, next week is my last official week of teaching, which means that I am very nearly at the end of my degree. I have no idea where these past three years have gone! Alas, all good things must come to an end, and with that in mind I’ve recently been doing a lot of reflecting upon my time here at Sheffield and what I’ve learnt during it.

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I (somehow) now know what I want to do:

I was accepted onto the Teach First programme to teach Secondary English last summer (which seems like a lifetime ago!), starting this September. I’ve always thought about teaching but the opportunities I’ve had available to me over the course of my degree, for example various teaching/tutoring volunteer projects, have shown me that teaching is what I really want to do. That said, even if you’re still unsure about what direction you want to go in, then do not panic! You don’t have to know what you want to do right now – I’ve just been a bit lucky, I think.

I’ve met some amazing people:

The people I’ve met during my degree  have honestly made my uni experience. As cheesy as it sounds, I don’t think I would have been able to get through the difficult times without them! I’ve made it a personal goal of mine to make sure that I don’t lose touch with the friends I’ve made as they’re some of the best people I’ve ever met.

I’ve learnt how to be a pro multi-tasker:

I’ve somehow managed to juggle three part-time jobs this year alongside a full-time English Literature degree. People think I’m literally insane, however I’ve actually quite enjoyed the busy days. I think it’s taught me that I am able to handle quite a lot when I need to but it has also proved that resting and having days where you do absolutely nothing is equally as important!

These are just a few of my key reflections that I’ve had over the last few weeks. If you sit and think about yours, I’m sure you’ll see that you’ve learnt far more than what you realise!


Posted in Extracurricular, Written by Valerie

Extra-Curricular Activities.

A great way to gain valuable work experience, increase your skills and improve your general well being, is to get involved in activities outside of your course.

There are numerous activities you can do and if you are looking to gain specific job-related skills you can tailor the activity, so that you are getting the experience you need. There are lots of opportunities at the university to help you get the most out of your time here. which will also help you gain the experience you will need for your future career. You could join a society or club, sit on a committee, become a mentor or ambassador, or volunteer. These are all ways to enrich your CV, get valuable work experience – and provide you with a reference!

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Societies and Committees.

Joining a society or committee can be an enjoyable experience that will help you meet new people and learn new skills. If you take a position on a committee you will receive training, gain experience of managing projects, working as part of a team and get recognition on your HEAR (Higher Education Achievement Report).


There are various mentoring programmes within the university that you could get involved in. You could be a mentor within your department or you could be mentor in one of the schools that the university works with. Working on these programmes enables you to develop transferable skills whilst contributing positively to the lives of local pupils. Mentoring is also HEAR accredited.

You can volunteer to be a mentor or you could apply to be a part time paid mentor, more information here: Programme website for more information


There are lots of volunteering opportunities in Sheffield and the Students Union has an office that deals specifically with volunteering opportunities. You can volunteer to help on projects within the university or the wider Sheffield community. Whether you’re looking to gain experience to help you with your future career or you just want to get involved, there will be something for you! Find out more here:

Twice a year the Students Union run “Give It A Go” activities. These sessions offer a taster of volunteering and a chance to benefit the local community. This is a great opportunity to try different things out and find the right one for you. They are brilliant for your physical and mental health, a great chance to meet new people and offer something exciting to boost your CV! 

You can find more information on “Give it a Go” on the Students Union website, here:

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Posted in Extracurricular, Uncategorized, Written by Katie

Try Something New

Now that essay deadlines are passing, you may have a bit of spare time on your hands so this is the perfect opportunity to try something new. Below are some of the things I want to try out before the year is up.


If you read my blogs regularly you will know I am a frozen pizza and instant noodle enthusiast. That is because I can’t cook and I feel like cooking requires too many ingredients, herbs and spices. I’m sure cooking can be made simple and I want to learn. Maybe I can even learn to make home-made pizza!cooking

Some kind of sport

Back in the good old school days I was really sporty but once exams started taking over my life in the form of GCSE’s, A-Levels and uni I ran out of time to do sports. Tennis is a sport I have always wanted to have a go at but never got round to. I have a tennis racket that I bring to uni every year in the hope that I will find my passion for tennis. It has still never been taken out the packet.



Give it a Go

I always wanted to try give it a go and do something I’ve never done before like stunt cheerleading or how to run a cinema.

Start a society

I want to come up with a new and innovative idea for a society. Something nobody has ever thought of. I’m running out of time for this one so you guys may have to do this one on my behalf.

A protest

Okay, I’m cheating a little as I actually did my first ever protest over the weekend which inspired this blog. I took part in Reclaim the Night which was a march against sexual violence and assault. I learnt that political activism really isn’t my kind of thing but at least I can tick it off the bucket list.


Arts and Crafts

I’m not very creative but I want to learn a craft related skill such as sewing, cross stich or knitting.

Posted in Extracurricular, Written by Ellie

It’s Never too Late to Join a Society!

As a global ambassador for the university, I often get asked, mainly by international students, ‘where can I mix with a bigger group of people?’ and my answer is always ‘at a society!’, to which they always reply, ‘but isn’t it too late?’, ‘absolutely not!’ It is the 8th November 2017 as I write this, and I know full well that if i fancied joining the baking society tomorrow I would be welcomed with open arms!

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So the only question that remains is: how do I immediately join a society?

Well, I think first things first: have a look through the societies available within the university. You can do so on the SU’s website here:

There are literally over 340 societies at the university so it’s likely that you’ll find like minded people in a society that appeals to you.

Not only do we have so many, but there’s an opportunity for you to create a new society if you don’t find one that appeals! This means that the list will just keep on growing!

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Now, I understand that just signing up to a society knowing only their description from the website is quite a rash thing to do; some people feel the need to give things a go before committing… Well… thank goodness that some clever individual came up with ‘Give it a Go’. This is literally a session put on by a society where non-members can turn up and try out whatever activity the society does. All of the upcoming events are here:

So there’s your answers! Here at Sheffield, we take societies seriously, and that means that anyone, at any time can find their society and make a whole new bunch of friends who share the same passions and interests as themselves!


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Posted in Extracurricular, Written by Katie

Summer Abroad

So you may be super organised and trying to figure out what to do with your summer or maybe you just want to develop your skills. This summer I went to Ghana with ICS and here is why you should do it too.


Leave your comfort zone!

Surprisingly, being in the middle of a foreign country and not knowing where you are going is probably going to be taking you out of your comfort zone. It isn’t the easiest experience but you learn how to deal with difficult situations (which is fab for your CV).

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Get a free holiday (sort of)

You do have to work and there are some fundraising events you will need to do but essentially the government pay most of it. It’s not all work and no play though; I saw crocodiles, learned about the slave trade, learned African dance skills and spent some time relaxing on the beach.


Create some really cool events

Fundraising sounds difficult but the majority of people only need to raise £800 as it is funded by the governments Department for International Development. You can create really fun events for your community. I fundraised on my year abroad and took St Patricks Day, Pancake Day and pub quizzes to Slovenia. You can meet new people and have lots of fun.


Do something new

International Citizenship Service (ICS) partners with a range of charities working in a range of countries on a range of projects. You can do almost anything. I did Business Consulting with Challenges Worldwide but you can raise awareness of AIDS and HIV in South Africa, improve access to water in Nicaragua or improve gender education in India.


Develop cross-cultural working skills

You will be working with an ICV (In Country Volunteer) and they may have very different views to you on the role of women, homosexuality, race and religion. This can be a challenge but you can use it as a chance to develop your skills. This was the first time I had ever worked with someone who openly had very Conservative views but I learnt to deal with that. Inevitably, there were conflicts (especially when my ICV said he hates white people, women, the British and  that people without a religion shouldn’t have a life (he knew each of those applies to me)) but I developed conflict resolution strategies.


It will be the best experience of your life

You will be there with plenty of other volunteers who you will meet at pre-departure training. They will become your best friends and be there for you when times get tough. You will laugh, dance and play games with them. The memories are unforgettable!


You will be helping one of the poorest countries in the world

The best reward is knowing you made a difference! More info on ICS is here: