I’m Lucy and I’m here to tell you about life as a third year on one of the brand spanking new Masters of Science (MSci) programmes in the Faculty of Life Sciences (FLS). I’ll be updating you throughout the year as I venture into the uncharted territory of project proposals and bioinformatics as one of the first ever MSci students. I’ll also be telling you a bit about my (hopefully slightly interesting) life as a student as we go.
First, let me tell you a bit about myself. I moved to Manchester at the age of 19 from the not so glamorous or sunny seaside town of Blackpool. Now, a couple of years on, I’ve somehow made it through to third year and I’ve completely fallen in love with Manchester. I decided I couldn’t bear to leave at the end of this year, so I’m staying for a masters!
I was lucky enough to spend most of my summer travelling this year. It all started off with an FLS field course to Costa Rica, where I conducted my own research on tropical frogs and toads. Following the field course, I and a few of my course friends stayed behind for some adventures of our own involving zip lines, horses, volcanic mud baths, diving and a 3 day pit stop in New York on the way home! The trip gave me the fondest and funniest memories that I’ll be blabbering about for years to come, as well as lots of very “Gap yah” photos! I celebrated my 21st birthday at home with my family and squeezed in as many hours at work as possible, then continued on to London, Greece and Paris.
After a whirlwind summer of excitement and mayhem (which left me with a very sad looking bank account), I’m more than ready to be settling back into a routine at uni. I’m now living in a cosy house with 3 flatmates from first year and our new pet goldfish, Rhubarb. This has quite frankly been a welcome change from the madness of living in an enormous 8 bedroom party house last year. It was so much fun, but it’s time to knuckle down.
Over the years, we’ve discovered some of the unique little gems that Manchester has to offer. One of these is the Hallé Orchestra at the Bridgewater Hall. I’ve never been much of classical music fan, but the Hallé puts on an incredible show every week and as a student you can get tickets for just £3! It’s really worth giving it a go if you fancy something different and it’s unbelievably cheap!
Right about now is my favourite time of year to be in Manchester. There is SO much going on. Warehouse Project is back in full swing until New Year, the Christmas market cabins are popping up in town and last week it was Bonfire night. Platt Fields Park (right across the road from the UoM accommodation) hosts a free fireworks display, bonfire and funfair each year. It’s always a great night! As for the Christmas markets, they’ve just open so I will be there faster than you can say ‘hog roast’, ready to spend more money that I don’t have on delicious food that I don’t need. I’m sure my next blog post will include a picture of me looking very merry indeed with some mulled wine at the markets – YAY!
Now we’re halfway through the semester, so you’ll find me buried under an ever growing pile of work! I’m in the process of planning the first of two research project proposals for my masters, one of which will become my final year project. Both will be based in the field of parasitology (I have a thing for parasites – don’t ask!). The one I’m currently working on will be looking at the immune response against whipworm, a disease which affects many people in developing countries. It’s going to be a lot of work but I’m really excited to finally have the freedom to design a project that is my own and on something I’m really passionate about. Speaking of my project proposal, I really better get on with it as I’m miles behind (shhh – don’t tell my supervisor).
Ciao for now!