I went to Brighton University starting September 2014 to study Multimedia Broadcast Journalism. I was placed in Hastings Campus. I'm writing to share my experience because I wish someone had better informed me of 'Brighton University - Hastings Campus' before I agreed to go and waste a lot of money on it.
1. Lack of sports and society’s
After a disappointing Hastings fresher’s fair, I emailed the sport clubs in Eastbourne and Brighton expecting some organised transport available for Hastings students and there was none. I was told i'd have to supply my own transport. I was told that you could be refunded for train tickets but this would take a while. For me and most other people this option was too expensive and a too much hassle. (Train journey to Brighton 1hr15 there and 1hr15 back... on a good day. Return ticket with railcard - £11)
The opening week at Hastings was well presented and exciting. Two teachers who introduced us to the course were impressive. However, I’m afraid from that point, it was disappointing.
The impressive teachers didn't actually take us for our lessons and instead we had three other teachers. We had mac computers to use which was good however, they didn’t seem to have a clue how to use the software that we spend a lot of time on, editing vox pops etc. We were given the numbers of two technicians however, where told not to bother them too much. If the teacher doesn’t know how to work the software, and we can’t easily access the technicians, I’m not sure how students are expected to learn anything. It was a constant set back. I do not have a mac computer at home and I know many of the students found this frustrating too.
One Teacher often left the class for a large chunk of the lesson and another kept leaving early. I understand one teacher was writing a book and had other personal commitments. I actually wonder whether teaching was really her priority. I was very surprised at an E-mail to all the students regarding attitude and attendance as I felt I had experienced this exact problem, except with our teachers.
I only saw the course tutor in person twice. Once on fresher’s week and once when she came in to pick student ambassadors. I tried to find her office twice and both times, she was not in. I E- mailed her asking what time her office hours were and I didn’t get a response. She often posted on Facebook. At the beginning of the year (determined to get involved) I replied to one of her posts offering to cover a news story. I was not helped with this and nothing came of it, I did not hear back from her at all.
Another tutor we had spent his first two lectures apologising how he wasn’t logged into the Brighton university system. Since then his lectures where repetitive and he was prone to rambling. The lecturers seemed to be a last minute recruitments who would clearly prefer to be living in Brighton. This brings me to my next point.
Brighton university cannot facilitate the Hastings campus adequately. At no point did I feel like a Brighton student.
I lived in a university recommended house. This house is situated on Devonshire Road. Two of my housemates have been subject to nasty racial abuse, verbal and physical. I have been threatened with rape. We’ve had firecrackers exploding in our skip. No one dares leave the house after dark alone. It seems the street has a reputation that nobody thought to tell us. EasyLet (our letting company) have since then informed us that the university have always known about this.
Coming from Newcastle, unlike the girls I lived with, I couldn’t go home for weekends and was often left alone. I felt as a student of Brighton university I wasn’t invited to join in things that Brighton university had to offer and, as a Hastings student I was simply forgotten about. I feel like the Hastings campus is only interested in the financial benefits of having students, with no real regard for student happiness, wellbeing or safety.
I rung student finance in November when I left and was told that Brighton University have made no contact to inform them of recent changes to my funding. I rang the Brighton office straight after the phone call and after being put through to several different people I eventually came to an unhelpful blunt lady who told me the person who deals with students leaving and finance had left for the day (even though I called in the morning) and no one could help me till Monday.
I Emailed several different relevant people explaining why I had left and that I didn’t want to end up paying another term worth of fees. I got an email back telling me that they would contact student finance with a formal withdrawal notice.
Its now January and after receiving another terms maintenance loan, I rang Student finance who explained to me that Brighton had still not got in touch with them about me leaving and that Brighton would soon be receiving another terms worth of fee's. I have had to now send another email to Brighton to ask them to sort this out as paying another terms worth of fee's when i am not there is FRAUD.
This highlights that even though its the Hastings campus I would urge you to avoid, Brighton itself is also proved useless. I would not recommend Brighton University to anyone.
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