Envision Cornwall. What do you see? Picturesque beaches? Hunky surfers? Quaint fishing ports and beautiful coastal fortresses? If so, what you see is exactly what you get! Not only is Cornwall a charming location in which to live, but it is also host to an invigorating and artistic social scene – which is why it is the perfect place to study!
Undoubtedly, this particular University differs greatly from those in major cities, most notably with a lack of prodigious buildings. However, this is outweighed by the vast opportunities in which the South West County has to offer. Cornwall is well-renowned for its culture – providing endless art galleries, theatres and art house cinemas, as well as a range of vitalizing sports opportunities. For me, studying at this University has opened my eyes to how I am able to enjoy my education in conjunction with the beauty of my surroundings. Nonetheless, Cornwall is an exquisite hive, of which many people underestimate its educational potential. It’s a well-rounded location to study and provides young students with a rich and cultured background, which will complement their studies, whatever they may be.
So Christmas is over and it’s back to University we go! But don’t let this get you down. Yes, it’s another term, which can only mean more reading, writing and revising. And yes, the weather is horrendously bad, but don’t let that stop you from enjoying the start of a brand new year! I have composed a list of activities, events and locations to check out in the coming months:
Falmouth has a reputation for its creative and artistic scene, so what greater place to visit than the Falmouth Art Gallery? For students studying at the University, they offer free talks, tours and workshops on all the exhibitions. This is great for any artistic work that you may be doing for your course, or it can be just a fun and visually enticing day out! (This is year-round, so an added bonus!)
If you’re a “grab some popcorn and watch a movie” kind of collegiette, Falmouth’s polytechnic society, “The Poly,” has a range of films they are screening over the coming months. On Saturday 25th January, they are showing Gone with the Wind (1939), a great American classic that everyone can appreciate! And on the 10th-11th February, they are screening Captain Phillips (2013), so if you’re a Tom Hanks fan, it’s a must see! Or if you’re a modern moviegoer and enjoy watching the latest blockbusters with your friends, The Phoenix is the place to go! Upcoming films include the horror Devil’s Due, biographical comedy The Wolf of Wall Street (starring Leonardo DiCaprio, may I sneakily add), and the theatre version of Michael Morpurgo’s War Horse. There is something to suit everyone’s preference, so put down your books and indulge in the latest cinematic extravaganza!
If you’re the adventurous type, then a fantastic place to visit is Truro Paintball. The name pretty much explains itself, but what many people do not know is that they offer a variety of special packages, including coasteering, nightclub entries and even a pizza, paintball and pint session! All these range from a mere £12 to £55, so it’s affordable for a student budget and results in a day well spent.
If you’re into water-sports, what better way to appreciate Cornwall’s beaches and get into the true Cornish spirit than by taking advantage of Falmouth and Porthtowan’s Surf School? From here, you can hire surfboards and wetsuits for as little as an hour to as long as four days. A variety of prices is offered, making it suitable for a student budget. And if you spend over £30, they will even deliver it to your destination for free! Additionally, if you haven’t already, join up with Flexsi at the FXU. It costs only £5 for the whole year and provides you with many sporting activities, from surfing to ping pong to swimming!
If you’re a party girl and want to make the most of Cornwall’s social scene, then there is plenty to gorge on! To fully appreciate Falmouth and its Cornish roots, it’s best to start the night at small charming pubs, which should certainly make you feel right at home. A favourite of mine and my flatmates is The Kings Head, which offers a drink titled the “Juicy Lucy.” Still to this day, I do not know what it contains — and it will probably stay that way. If you prefer to drink more sophisticatedly, The Shed provides an assortment of cocktails from only £4.50! Can you say, “Yes waiter, I’d like an Elvis Las Vegas followed by a Mudslide”? In here, there is sure to be a drink to suit your desires. This is the section where I take advice from our dear girlfriend, Miss Carrie Bradshaw, who once quoted, “I’d like a cheeseburger, large fries and a cosmopolitan,”which to many of us pretty much sums up how we feel at the end of a good night out.
What I aim to provide with this short but sweet list was a relief for students. University isn’t all about studying hard — although that is of course a major part of it. It’s about having fun, making friends and enjoying your education. Every once in a while, we need to relax and reward ourselves with a nice cocktail or a day out at the beach. Not many people appreciate Cornwall during the winter period, but we, as students at the University of Falmouth and Exeter, are able to see the county in all its glory the whole year round! So visit the surrounding countryside, take a train journey to somewhere new, grab a camera, take some snaps, create a blog … document your time at University and make the most of beautiful Cornwall!