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The University of Southampton
Mathematical SciencesPostgraduate study

Alex Coombs MMath Master of Mathematics

3rd year student

Alex Coombs's Photo

Everyone at the University is so friendly, and you get to know so many people, that you can pretty much run into friends at in any part of campus, and just around Southampton altogether.

Why did you choose to come and study at Southampton?

I think what really swung it for me was the open day. Having spent quite a lot of time wandering around giant campuses and listening to over-rehearsed speeches from ambassadors, it made a welcome change to come to Southampton, where the staff seemed genuinely interested in what people had to say, and the students offered original insight into student life. Combined with being a Russell Group university, and with well-known connections to various companies and industries I was interested in, it really did seem like the best place to go.

What is it like studying here?

I was quite surprised by how quickly I settled in and just how used to everything I became in the first few weeks. Each lecturer has a different feel, so the modules feel varied. Everyone around campus is pretty easy to talk to, and it’s really easy to start a conversation with just about anyone – especially in the first few weeks!

What are you enjoying most about your course?

There’s quite a bit of variety in the maths department. Quite a lot of people get easily bored if they’re always learning about the same thing, but on my course it’s very rare for modules to overlap too much in content. It really keeps you on your toes, and makes it easier to pay attention and keep up.

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

I feel that with the variety of modules in mathematics courses, almost everything is outside your core subject area! For the people taking more financial or statistical degrees though, there are definitely opportunities to try a few things outside your comfort zone.

How do you rate the study facilities at the University?

The facilities at the uni have always been fantastic. Everyone always talks about Hartley Library and the Union building, but the shop and pub on campus have probably been even more dependable! As a maths student you’ll have access to the maths student centre, so even during the busy times when the library is packed, you'll always have somewhere to work.

What have been your Southampton ‘highlights’ so far?

Surprisingly, a lot of the best memories from my time at University have come from normal, regular events, which I think is a testament to the people you live with and are on your course. However, if you’re willing to work hard and stand out in your course, you tend to receive the recognition that goes along with it.

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

I definitely came out of my shell quite a bit! Everyone at the University is so friendly, and you get to know so many people, that you can pretty much run into friends at in any part of campus, and just around Southampton altogether. The experience has given me a lot of independence when it comes to studying and general living and I’ve learned quite a few skills that will certainly help me in the real world after uni.

What opportunities has studying at Southampton provided you with?

The University name opens up quite a few doors in the graduate world, as it has connections with a lot of companies in various trades around the world. People are always being offered summer internship opportunities, and the regular careers fairs give a great opportunity to learn more about what’s out there.

What one word sums up how you feel about your experiences so far at Southampton?


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