The University of Southampton
Chemistry

Salina Ale MChem Chemistry with industrial experience, 2018

Undergraduate student

Salina Ale's Photo

You gain a lot of transferrable skills from this degree, mainly, time management, meeting deadlines, revision techniques and team work.

Why did you choose to come and study at Southampton?

I chose Southampton because I liked the look of the area and that the campus was all situated in one area so made it easier to navigate. Also, it was a good distance from home so practical as well.

What is it like studying here?

Studying here is challenging for sure. You really have to be on top of work, especially when doing a chemistry degree with all the hours. My first and second year was quite hard as I wasn’t prioritising my studies well and so I was not working to the best of my abilities. However, third year, I have become more organised, juggling work and studies and extracurricular activities well and keeping on top of everything. Lectures are challenging, atmosphere here is fun and vibrant and student community is okay, not the most engaging though.

How do you rate study facilities at the University?

The chemistry building is quite big with many computer rooms so never any trouble getting space to study. The sports centre is nice and the labs are good too.

What have been your Southampton ‘highlights’ (best experiences) so far?

One of my highlights was joining the Chemsoc committee as sports rep. At the beginning this was not my aim, my aim primarily was to create a netball club for the chemistry department as I believed we lacked sports clubs. I set up the club at the start of third year and organised practices and matches through intramural. I have 16 girls on my intramural team and around 30 for the club. We ended intramural third of our league which I was very pleased with, especially considering we were a new team. As part of Chemsoc I also helped plan socials which brought a lot of the chemistry community together. Another highlight is the project that I am working on now for my dissertation in electrochemistry. I find this independent project fascinating and character building due to the freedom you get with it. This allowed me to do what I found interesting in chemistry. I am also looking forward to my placement next year.

How has your time at Southampton helped you to grow as a person?

My time in Southampton has definitely shaped me up to be a more organised, efficient, hard-working and well-rounded individual. My academic ability has increased tenfold, especially this third year. This year has made me enjoy chemistry much more than I used to. You gain a lot of transferrable skills from this degree, mainly, time management, meeting deadlines, revision techniques and team work. Joining Chemsoc and creating a netball team has given more courage when it comes to being a leader and a motivator.

What are you enjoying most about your course?

This year I am definitely enjoying my project the most. I am working with amazing people and doing something I truly enjoy and that in itself has caused me to work harder than I have ever done before. I am also enjoying my modules this year, especially atmospheric and quantum physics as I find those areas of chemistry most exciting.

Do you have the opportunity to study modules outside of your core subject area?

Yes you do through optional modules. I would advise you to take full advantage of these like I did with the maths and philosophy courses I took in first and second year. It just provides a bit of variety and stops you going chemistry mad (unless you truly love it)!

What is the city of Southampton like to live in?

Southampton as a whole is a very nice place to live in. It has a great night life with many clubs and bars, very affordable for us poor students! In the first year you get a free bus pass, which is very handy when travelling around! Many societies are available to join as well. The Chemsoc committee also plan many socials and events, like our house crawls and summer ball, throughout the year, allowing you to make new friends and form lasting bonds with students across all years.

*Course formerly titled MChem Chemistry with six-month placement

 

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