Many people claim that the third year will be the hardest, the most boring, and have the heaviest workload, especially when you study History. This was not the case for me; the workload seems similar to previous years, except now I know what I’m doing and how to work to the best of my abilities. I got involved in more societies, volunteered, became the Head of Station for QMTV and started working for the Students’ Union as a member of their Venues and Events team.
Somehow though, to my surprise, third year has easily been my favourite. Through my job, I met those “forever” friends that everyone always says you make at university, and have perfected the balance between social life, procrastination and frantic essay writing.
My three years at Queen Mary have been better than anyone could have told me, and, by throwing myself into SU volunteering schemes I found my passion for teaching. Throughout my time at QM, my career plans bounced from doing a law conversion course, to journalism, to law again, but it was not until I started tutoring through QMSU’s Homework Club that I discovered how rewarding teaching could be.
This year, I gained a level of confidence I never thought I could achieve, and this is thanks to the sense of community fostered at this university. I remember in my History in Practice module in my first semester at QM, we had to give a group presentation and I was so nervous that my hands shook violently enough that reading my notes was an impossible task.
A few weeks ago, I gave a presentation for my dissertation module at a different university in front of a class of near strangers. Not only was I not nervous, but I confidently presented without so much as a shake. This would have not been possible without my experiences at QM and teaching a class of thirty judgemental children suddenly does not seem quite so daunting.
I ran a media outlet in my third year, presented a radio show on Quest Radio called ‘In This Year’, and made a circle of friends I couldn’t imagine being without now. Nobody wants university to end, and if I could relive my third year I certainly would, but thanks to Queen Mary, my job and my new best friends (that’s right you can’t escape me even after I graduate) I feel prepared and excited to take the next step.