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I chose Nottingham primarily because of its beautiful campus. Having decided on the course I wanted to do at Birmingham, I visited Nottingham for an open day. I was told that Nottingham was one of the most impressive campuses in the UK, but I didnt expect this to sway my decision. However, having looked around I loved it and completely switched my plans!
Nottingham campus is impressive. The Lake is wonderful in the summer and it frames the majestic Trent building,which, as an English, student is the base of my studies.
I won't spend too much time discussing the academic merits of Nottingham in terms of my course as Im sure many of you reading this can't imagine anything worse than studying English for three years. If you are as mad as me, I wouldn't actually recommend my course! Its very broad based which is great and it will look good on my CV, but the department is a little too dry and traditional for my liking. Elsewhere, all you need to know is that the Uni has a very strong academic rep. and that the business and computing campus at Jubilee is modern, purpose-built and impressive.
Nottingham has good facilities. The libraries are well-stocked and I find the opening hours sufficient for when I actually get round to writing that essay! The sports facilities are also excellent with a good sports centre, swimming pool and fitness centre. If, like me, you prefer doing something a little more artistic in the way of exercise or leisure, there is a good range of societies and clubs to fill your spare time, from Russian Soc and Cocsoc (the cocktail society) to dance and music.
The Campus bar is a bit of a let down because its just too small. Cosy I guess and it does have a good atmosphere, but then you'll probably use it most in the first year before you venture off campus. After that, Nottingham will provide you with a range of clubs and bars for all sorts of tastes. I recommend Snug and the Bomb if you appreciate somthing a little less cheesy and a little more authentic in terms of a night life exprerience. Having said that., there is also plenty of cheese in Ocean. There are also some good rock and indie venues for those of you who like it a bit more hardcore. The jazz, soul, funk, RnB type vibes are distinctly lacking though (except the Bomb) which I think is the best club in Nottingham.
Accommodation wise, the first year will be spent in one of 14 halls if you're on University park. The standard of accommodation is really very good. If you want en-suite, you can probably get it. Halls also all have their own bars and some are very attractive buidings as well. (IE Cripps, the old bit of Hu-stu and Lenton House). The downside is that all halls are fully catered and the food isnt great. Although its all part of the experience. If you want self-catering you can live in University owned Broadgate park, just outside campus. However, i wouldnt recommend it. It makes social bonding tricky and most people will have a hall community which you wont. Also Broadgate tends to be full of foreign students. You wont have the same experience there and for a year of good food it's not worth it. Once off campus, housing is as good as you can be bothered to find. If you shop around you'll get a good deal. Most people live in Lenton, which is a great student area but inevitably crime-ridden. Also, there are some dodgy landlords about, so be vigilant.
Other facilities on campus are the health and dental centre, a couple of bank branches (a Natwest and HSBC), a very good union shop, a blackwells book shop, various food places, a careers centre and the impressive Lakeside theatre, which hosts some great stuff if you're into drama and dance.
I cannot reccommend Nottingham highly enough. Although my course has not entirely fulfilled my wishes, the experience I have had has far outweighed that. Come and visit us and I'm sure like me, you'll decide it's a great place to spend an amazing few years.