One of the benefits of spending the summer holiday in Southampton is that one gets to see how the University is outside the academic year. It also gives one an opportunity to experience the “British Summer”, with this year’s said to be the coldest in 30 years; talk about summer indeed. Obviously, the campus is less busy and it takes much less time to buy things at the union shop and susu cafe as the queues are shorter and consist of more staff than students at times. The Zepler labs are also less busy and I bet the computers love it as they get to rest from unending usage from we undergrads!
Majority of the students around are those working on their dissertations mostly due by September while PhD students are also around as they don’t get the luxury of the long summer holiday that we undergrads get. And then you have the members of staff who of course, are always here all year round. However, there are a number of undergrads around (like me) for various reasons such as internships, summer jobs or just the ‘love’ for Soton.
Fortunately, I had the benefit of jetting out twice for some time away from Southampton which gave me the opportunity to experience two different parts of Europe with of course different weathers from that of this ‘wonderful’ island. It gave me a glimpse into other European cultures and cities, gave me an opportunity to make new friends and I returned recharged for the remaining part of my internship.
Campus is already getting busier now as freshers and returning undergrads have started trickling in. You can tell from the student presence on the Concourse, the length of the queue at the Student Services and how crowded the uni-link buses are. I am already looking forward to the commencement of the new academic year though I have been sternly warned by my mates in the years ahead that this is going to be my toughest year yet. Oh well, quite helpful advice, right? And what do I do then; chicken out or what? Oh well, we’ll see how it goes for when the going gets tough, the tough gets going. Or as we say back home, “If you can’t take the heat, leave the kitchen”. Hopefully, I wouldn’t only survive the kitchen this year but would also make myself wonderful dishes!