Why getting to know the people is important

Universities are very different types of institutions to schools. When you first arrive, it can take time to adjust to the size of the place and to figure out who does what. But as you begin to research which universities to apply to, it may be helpful to begin learning who’s who at a university, and to hear from people who study and work there.

Whatever university you choose, you can rest assured that whatever your needs and wants, there will be people within the university who are there to help and support. For example, there are dedicated teams to support you with academic studies; practical matters like housing or jobs; personal matters like physical and mental health; or sports and social activities.

To help you consider your options, here we are profiling two counties: Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire. These two counties are home to three universities:

  • University of Derby, based in Derby
  • University of Nottingham, based in Nottingham
  • Nottingham Trent University, based in Nottingham


Meet undergraduates

If you would like to meet with students from your university of choice before applying, one of the best ways is to attend an open day (click here for more info). In the meantime, to read about the experiences of some of the undergraduates at your local universities, check out the links below:


Meet PhD researchers

As you can see in our who's who guide, PhD researchers are an important part of university life, including as teachers of many undergraduate seminars. To find out more, you can read about the experiences of some of the PhD researchers at your local universities here.

To get a better understanding, you can also watch these videos by PhD researchers at the University of Nottingham, University of Derby, and Nottingham Trent University, discussing what they studied and why they loved it.


Meet non-academic staff and support services

As well as the students and teachers in universities, you will also come across many non-academic staff who lead the institutions and support their day-to-day activities.

UofD Widening Participation  UofD Student Support  UofD Student Union

UofN Widening Participation  UofN Student Support  UofN Student Union

NTU Widening Participation  NTU Student Support  NTU Student Union