A lot of aspects of life across all of the UK’s universities are pretty similar — i.e. drinking, rainy winters, rapidly vanishing student loans. But every uni has its own unique quirks which separates it from the rest and University of Nottingham is no different.
1. The 901 or the 903?
This is a hard lesson learned during freshers’ year. Of the two double-decker hopper buses to and from main University Park campus, one is the five minute journey to Jubilee and the other is a forty minute journey to Royal Derby Hospital… with only one digit difference it’s an easy mistake to make when you’re rushing home after lectures and not paying attention. Needless to say it’s a mistake you only make once. Hopefully.
2. Free cardio training on behalf of University Main campus
Hills… So. Many. Hills. Don’t worry about going the gym. Walking up Portland Hill alone will work off that 4am Big Mac meal you had after a night out.
3. The maze of Portland Building…
Endless corridors that make you feel like an extra in the Maze Runner and specific paths to certain areas — one staircase can only take you to the food court, while another takes you to the seminar rooms. I know which I’d prefer.
4. …including the secret underground tunnel
It connects to the Trent building and, no, I’m not joking.
5. The tropical conditions of Hallward library
Best bring a change of shorts and sandals if you don’t want to be sweating out after a few hours of revision.
6. The curse of a huge campus
Bring some running shoes because, depending on your timetable, you will probably find yourself with back to back lectures and seminars at opposite ends of campus at least once. Having five to ten minutes to sprint from a lecture in the law and social sciences building to a seminar in Pope is arguably the biggest challenge of the semester — time to channel your inner Usain Bolt.
7. The geese own the place
Students will often find their paths blocked by a horde (horde, not flock) of geese. You soon learn you’re allowed to walk about the place only at their behest and even the buses don’t put up a fight when they block the main roads. Talk about fowl play.
8. The wonderfully weird buildings of Jubilee Campus
Seriously, go look. The spiral island of Djanogly library is fantastically wacky all on its own. Add the red checked theme of the rest of the buildings with a somewhat alarming slanted structure and you feel like you’re in some futuristic optical illusion village.
9. It’s not all concrete jungles and noise pollution
While the city centre is only a short bus ride away, the main campus exists in a vast bubble of greenery which soothes any countryside cravings. And if the acres of grassy fields and hundreds of trees weren’t enough, we even have a freakin’ lake on main campus. Let your inner hippy frolick.
10. The assumed snobbery
When people ask which university you’re attending, Uni Of or ‘the other one’, and you reply the former, you’d best prepare to be branded with a metaphorical top hat and stiff upper lip. For some reason people think we must spend all our time in the library and don’t have nearly as much fun as other university students.
All I’m saying is if they saw me eating cheesy fries outside Pryzm at night or doing laundry in my pjs then their illusions of mandatory poshness in Russell Group uni students would be shattered.
11. The mandatory photo in front of the colourful mosaic ‘Nottingham’ sign
If you haven’t had a photo in front of it in your graduation cap and gown did you even go here?