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 in the North West of England, Cumbria and Lancashire. These two counties are home to three universities:

  • Cumbria University, based in Carlisle
  • University of Central Lancashire, based in Preston
  • University of Lancaster, based in Lancaster


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 undergraduates at Cumbria

Meet undergraduates at UCLAN

Meet undergraduates at Lancaster


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 Lancaster, 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.

Cumbria Widening Participation  Cumbria Student Support  Cumbria Student Union

UCLAN Widening Participation  UCLAN Student Support  UCLAN Student Union

Lancaster Widening Participation  Lancaster Student Support  Lancaster Student Union