5 Ways To Find The Perfect Student Accommodation

Lisa Moran lives at New Mill Student Accommodation, Dublin and shares her advice about choosing where to live whilst at college.

1.       Consider the student accommodation on offer when researching your desired university and course

When choosing a potential university and degree, it is equally important to research what student accommodation is on offer too. Most students will live in the accommodation for nearly a year, and for a lot of people, it will be the first time they’re living away from home. Therefore it’s vital that you are in the right location and are in a comfortable setting in which you quickly feel at home.  I loved Dublin due to its great culture and its regular exciting events and activities – for me, it was essential to be within easy access to these and New Mill was the perfect option. I am only four minutes away from my college and a local supermarket and the popular bars and nightclubs are just six minutes away in a taxi. New Mill also has 24-hour staff on hand which really makes you feel safe – the staff are based on site meaning you have someone to speak to straightaway whatever is needed.

2.       Sign up to relevant newsletters and alerts

This is a great way to hear about the latest university news, upcoming events as well as spaces available at local student accommodation buildings.  Once I had decided I wanted to study Commercial Modern Music as part of the Design Institute of Technology, I made sure I was part of their mailing list. This is where I heard about the launch of New Mill and it allowed me to register my interest in becoming a resident a year before the development even opened.

3.       Look beyond the price

Wherever you’re looking for accommodation, there will be various options available at different price points, but you must look beyond the price and get to the bottom of what is and isn’t included.

On the face of it, some residences may appear to be more expensive, but when you factor in the auxiliary benefits of these developments, such as all-inclusive bills, city-centre locations which save on transport costs and access to gyms, for example, they often work out as really good value.  At New Mill, whatever type of room you choose, you sign your own licence, meaning that you aren’t liable for other people’s bills.

These all-inclusive residences also reduce stress as you know exactly what you need to pay each term, so you can focus on settling in, meeting new friends and studying. The condition and quality of your accommodation can have a huge impact on your overall university experience, so it’s imperative you choose what’s right for you.

4.       Be organised

There is a lot to think about when applying for university and it is really important to remain organised. Proactively reach out to student accommodation developments to register interest; there are plenty of students also looking for places to live so if you want to guarantee your spot, it’s important you get in there first.  Dublin is known for its limited supply of student accommodation so I made sure I applied in advance to secure my first choice residence.

5.       Don’t underestimate the importance of social activities

Look for accommodation that offers a busy social calendar and make the most of the resources they provide. Meeting new people and making friends can be really daunting when you move to a new city and are taken away from your home comforts, but attending events hosted by your student accommodation is a great way of breaking the ice with new people. Most student residences will place flyers around your building highlighting up-coming nights out or social clubs, so make an effort to attend as many of these as possible to meet new and different people.

Kavanagh Court – The Man Behind the Name

Having one of those ‘what is life?’ days? Questioning your own existence, where you are what’s your name? While we may not be able to help you out with that…we can shed some light on Kavanagh Court‘s name, why it was picked, and who Kavanagh was.

The man, the mystery

Kavanagh Court is named after one of Ireland’s most well-loved poets, Patrick Kavanagh. Born in 1904, Kavanagh became one of the major Irish writers of the 20th Century and remains celebrated today. His peers include Samuel Beckett and W.B. Yeats, the latter whose work Kavanagh strongly disliked. Today, you can find landmarks dedicated to each of these figures dotted around Dublin, including Beckett Bridge and, of course, the statue of Kavanagh along the Grand Canal, also known as ‘The Crank on the Bank’. Why not take a stroll and pay old Kav a visit?

Kavanagh began his writing career in the last years of the Irish Literary Renaissance, a movement that paralleled the rise of nationalism in Ireland after the country gained independence from Great Britain after WW1. Irish poets and writers felt freer from the constraints of English literary styles and began to express themselves on subjects more uniquely Irish with which they were more familiar, such as the nation’s impoverished peasants and labour and toil in Ireland’s rural areas.

From peasant to poet

Kavanagh himself had been born and raised in rural county Monaghan as the son of a shoemaker who owned a farm. Leaving school at the age of twelve, his literary knowledge was mainly self-taught and his interest in poetry was ridiculed. He continued to write for his own enjoyment while living a normal life playing as the goalie for a Gaelic football team, cycling to dances and going to Sunday Mass. It seemed Kavanagh was destined to follow in the footsteps of his father into peasant farming, but in 1928, he had a breakthrough and his poetry was first published in Dublin newspapers which encouraged him to pursue his love for writing.

After continued success for Kavanagh with his poetry, he was brought into the public eye through his popular book, The Green Fool, which was autobiographical of his early life and the struggles he faced both on the farm and in becoming a writer. He later produced his epic poem The Great Hunger and another novel called Tarry Flynn, but both were initially banned because the authorities thought that they showed rural Ireland in a bad light. Kavanagh argued that Tarry Flynn was ‘the only true account of rural life in Ireland’.

Kavanagh strongly disliked Yeats’ romanticised retellings of Irish country life, believing that his writing did not represent it honestly. His writing has had a strong influence over many Irish writers and poets since, including Seamus Heaney, who appreciated the simple and raw style of his work.

Why not have a watch of this video with an obituary reading by Kavanagh himself!

If You Ever Go To Dublin Town – Patrick Kavanagh

If you ever go to Dublin town
In a hundred years or so
Inquire for me in Baggot street
and what i was like to know
O he was the queer one
Fol dol the di do
He was a queer one
I tell you

My great-grandmother knew him well,
He asked her to come and call
On him in his flat and she giggled at the thought
Of a young girl’s lovely fall.
O he was dangerous,
Fol dol the di do,
He was dangerous,
I tell you.

On Pembroke Road look out for my ghost,
Dishevelled with shoes untied,
Playing through the railings with little children
Whose children have long since died.
O he was a nice man,
Fol do the di do,
He was a nice man
I tell you.

Go into a pub and listen well
If my voice still echoes there,
Ask the men what their grandsires thought
And tell them to answer fair,
O he was eccentric,
Fol do the di do,
He was eccentric
I tell you.

He had the knack of making men feel
As small as they really were
Which meant as great as God had made them
But as males they disliked his air.
O he was a proud one,
Fol do the di do,
He was a proud one
I tell you.

If ever you go to Dublin town
In a hundred years or so
Sniff for my personality,
Is it Vanity’s vapour now?
O he was a vain one,
Fol dol the di do,
He was a vain one
I tell you.

I saw his name with a hundred others
In a book in the library,
It said he had never fully achieved
His potentiality.
O he was slothful,
Fol do the di do,
He was slothful
I tell you.

He knew that posterity has no use
For anything but the soul,
The lines that speak the passionate heart,
The spirit that lives alone.
O he was a lone one,
Fol do the di do
Yet he lived happily
I tell you.

5 Ways to Socialise on a Student Budget

It’s the time to meet new people and socialise with students from all across the world, but, wait a minute – how do you do this on a tight student budget? Here’s how…

1. Nights In

Nothing beats a night in every now and then, and no-one’s saying it has to be a quiet one. Get the board games and the cards out, pop a movie on, play some music – do whatever you feel like.

The best thing about a night in? You get to invite who you want to spend time with, plus you’re saving pennies by staying home. It’s the perfect time to catch up, because we all know how busy it is juggling lectures, exams, and part-time jobs.

It’s a great way to socialise with other students in your building. Fill bowls up with popcorn (are you sweet or salty?) and have a cosy, chilled night at home.

2. Take a Stroll

If you’re feeling a little rough from the night(s) before, going for a fresh walk outside is exactly what the hangover-headache ordered. You’re lucky too because you’re in one of the most beautiful cities in the world: Dublin.

Now, we’re all about saving money and sticking to a budget, so, forget about all the paid walking tours of Dublin, you’re going to create your own one. Here’s an example of a street-art tour you can take in your own time. You don’t have to buy a ticket, you don’t have to listen to a tour guide, and you can go at your own leisurely pace. It’s a perfect way to get to know the streets of the city you’re in, and to socialise on a budget.

Street-Art Tour:

●       Start off at the Temple Bar, where you’ll be met by Conor Harrington’s outdoor masterpiece: Black Herds of the Rain.

●       Take a 3-minute walk to the Button Factory venue to see long-established street artist Maser and his piece BP Fallon.

●       13-minute walk to Francis Street to get an Instagram-worthy shot of American artist El Mac’s street art.

●       Make your way to the Bernard Shaw – a 19-minute walk from Francis Street – where Maser has collaborated with Australian artist Fintan McGee.

●       Last stop is a 15-minute walk to Merrion Row to get your second look at Conor Harrington’s work.

It’s not just street art that Dublin has to offer. Grab your mates and get stuck into Dublin’s history and foodie scene. Your strolls through the city don’t have to break the bank, and it’s a great way to socialise with friends and meet new and like-minded people. Dublin has a lot more to offer than a pint of Guinness.

3. Deals

There’s no better way to stay on a budget than to hunt down all the student deals. And guess what? Dublin is full of them. Whether you’re after a few drinks, a feast, or to catch a movie, then pay close attention because we’ve got you covered.

Drinks:

●       Howl at the Moon offers €2.50 drinks every Wednesday.

●       Capitol Bar offers 2-for-1 cocktails on Tuesdays.

●       Dicey’s Garden offers €2 pints on Sundays and Mondays.

Food:

●       Apache Pizza gives you a small pizza with two toppings, chips, and a drink for €5, Monday to Thursday.

●       Mexico to Rome gives you a starter, a main, and a glass of house wine or soft drink for €9.95.

●       Captain America’s gives you 2-for-1 on main courses from Monday to Wednesday.

If you like watching things on the big screen then you can do some movie-socialising at The IFI, where Student Monday gives you 2-for-1 tickets. Can’t say no to that, can you?

4. Let’s Get Cultural

We all know Dublin is renowned for its nightlife, but it’s time to get cultural. Visiting museums and galleries is a great way to socialise on a budget, and, best of all, you get to discover Dublin and explore its rich cultural scene.

It’s not all about the Guinness Factory. Gain free entry to the National Museum of Ireland, the National Gallery of Ireland, the National Botanic Gardens, and various other sites to keep socialising with your friends without breaking the bank.

5. Celebrate Dublin

A city full of charm, charisma, and most importantly: Guinness. It’s time to embrace Dublin and celebrate the city as a whole. Talk to the locals, hang out in the beautiful gardens, and acknowledge the ways you can meet people from all over the world in Ireland’s capital.

If you’re struggling for places to go (we don’t know how), here are Dublin’s top student places to begin your adventure.

Now, grab your phone and pick your favourite Instagram filter, because we can’t wait to see your Dublin socialising stories. Show us on Facebook or tweet us @UninestIreland.

 

5 Ways to Survive Freshers Flu

Who’s feeling a little rough then? Freshers’ week is done and dusted, and it doesn’t look like the fun is going to slow down any time soon. Before you attempt to get that UV paint off your jeans, here’s a few ways to help that banging in your head stop.

1. The Power of the Paracetamol

Right, so let’s be honest: paracetamol isn’t going to cure this mother of all hangovers, but it will help lessen the aches and pains of those dance moves. Make sure you stock up on these little capsules of headache-healer so you have enough to last you at least until the next night out.

To up your vitamin levels without having to move or cook anything, get yourself some Berocca tablets. They will help to increase your nutrients, making you feel like you’ve had a plate full of veg, without actually having a plate full of veg. Remember, stock up on these too, unless you do want to have a full plate of veg – that’s your choice.

2. Sleeping Beauty

We bet you can count the number of hours sleep you’ve had on one hand… Are we right? If so, then get back to bed! Quick, before those early lectures start, it’s time to catch up on your shut-eye. A good night’s (or day’s) sleep is a cure for all things hungover. Although, try not to dream about those embarrassing antics you got up to in the Student’s Union the other night.

What better excuse than to lay in bed all day with your new soulmate Netflix? Give yourself some well-earned rest and your freshers’ flu will soon be over.

3. Just Keep Eating, Just Keep Eating

Right, enough of the end-of-the-night kebabs and pizzas, it’s time to get back on the good food kick. Starting to eat a little healthier will help you feel better. And we’re not just saying it, it’s proven: vitamin C helps to protect your cells and keep you healthy. Vitamin C can be found in your fruits and vegetables, so get those sprouts at the ready (too early for Christmas jokes?).

Along with your happy helping of greens, don’t forget to stay hydrated too. And no, not with more alcohol – with water. Water will help to get rid of any of those leftover freshers’ germs you’ve picked up.

4. Did Someone Say House Party?

We know you don’t want to miss out on any freshers’ activities, so how about having a freshers’ night in? It doesn’t have to be a Scrabble night (unless that’s your thing); throwing a house party or attending one will help to fasten the freshers’ flu cure.

How will it help? Well, for one, you won’t have to do the freezing-cold walk between the club and the takeaway. You won’t have to be squashed into sweaty clubs, where you can feel the freshers’ germs building up as you throw your next move. Plus, staying in will help you save a little pocket money for those extra beers at the end of the week.

Flat or house parties are also a great way to integrate with your fellow freshers, but, be careful not to invite the already freshers’-flu-contaminated ones – it’s too late for them.

5. Keep It Clean Guys

No-one likes the idea of having to clean, especially if it’s your student halls, but if you really want to survive freshers’ flu then you’ll need to do just that. Keeping your room and social spaces clean and getting rid of germs lingering about will give you a lovely, clean space to do nothing but chill out in.

You see those stacked up takeaway boxes and the empty glass bottles on the windowsill? Yeah, throw them out. It’s not a competition of how high your bin can get before someone takes it out, because it will be you that has to take it out anyway.

Nothing seems worse than leaving your cosy safe haven of your bed, right? But, if you want to be rid of all things freshers’ flu then we suggest to get up and get out. Go for a walk (even a run if you can stomach it) and get some fresh air. Being outside will help increase your vitamin D levels and you’ll definitely feel more refreshed than lounging around smelling of last night’s takeaway mixed with alcohol (eww!).

There you have it: the five ways to survive freshers’ flu. Remember, these tips come in handy for all those other college nights out too. Let us know if you think of any other freshers’ flu hacks on Facebook or on Twitter @UninestIreland.

5 Tips for Settling into College Life

Now that the long and nerve-wracking wait for results is over, and you know for definite that you’re going to the college of your dreams, it’s time for you to fly the nest!

College life will no doubt mark the start of a new adventure for you, and we all know how daunting that can be; tasks that you would normally take for granted can now feel unreasonably mammoth. But fret not; we’ve put together a list of five tips that will help you settle right into the university experience without a hitch! Continue Reading

5 Ways to Get the Most Out of Freshers’ Week

Oh freshers’ week, how we do love thee. Full of exciting activities, free food, and probably more collective hangovers than the rest of the year combined, it’s the event of the year for first-year students.

With so many things going on, it’s easy to feel like you’re missing out on something, so to help you out we’ve listed the top five ways to get the most out of your freshers’ week.

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7 Ways to Plan Ahead for Your Next Year at College

male-sudent-planning-ahead

If you’re reading this, congratulations on surviving a year of college! You’re probably now a seasoned pro at getting to 9am lectures on time, and not starting your assignments the night before they’re due.

So why not continue your winning streak by doing these seven things to get prepped for your next year, helping you to stay on top of everything from your finances to your study time.

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A Guide to Dublin’s Universities and Colleges

Dublin is home to many internationally-acclaimed universities and colleges. Between these historic institutions (and a few modern additions), they have produced big names in an impressive array of disciplines, but they are perhaps best-known for their literary alumni. Famous figures like Samuel Beckett, James Joyce, Oscar Wilde, WB Yeats, and many more have shared educational roots that can be traced right back here to Dublin.

To give you a better understanding of these higher-education institutions, here’s a brief introduction to all universities and colleges in the Irish capital.

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The Ultimate Guide to Packing for College

Summer is already coming to a close! Where has it gone, eh? All panic aside, the time has come for you to really get excited about college! If you’re anything like us, you’ll be putting off the chore of packing until the last minute. But luckily for you, we’ve had years of practice from helping new students turn up on the big moving-in day, so here are some top tips on how to get sorted. No fuss!

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