Ecology/Conservation UCL and Imperial - uni life? Watch

Gemini4601
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Hello! I'm currently debating between my acceptances to the MRes Ecology, Evolution and Conservation Research program at Imperial and the Biodiversity, Evolution and Conservation MRes at UCL.

I'm from NYC and looking forward to the research programs in either school since they both have connections to the ZSL. My main question is about the day to day life between the center of London and Silwood Park near Ascot. I've grown up in a huge city so moving to London isn't a huge "need" for me, but I'm wondering how that will compare to the postgrad Silwood campus that seems very isolated and small (are there even grocery stores nearby?) I finished undergrad at a very small rural college in NY (<3000 students), and I think another environment like that would make me go stir crazy. On the other hand, I left NYC in order to focus on my degree, so I'm wondering how living in London will affect me in such a work-intensive program. ANY insights or anecdotes would be well appreciated!

Besides this daily life, any extra comments or firsthand experiences on either program would be super helpful, too! The academic environment, time devoted to developing project ideas, the level of student support etc etc. Thanks so much!
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alleycat393
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You're coming for high level research training not a holiday! These courses are quite intense and expensive so I would focus on picking the best one for you not whether you will have a good social life!
(Original post by Gemini4601)
Hello! I'm currently debating between my acceptances to the MRes Ecology, Evolution and Conservation Research program at Imperial and the Biodiversity, Evolution and Conservation MRes at UCL.

I'm from NYC and looking forward to the research programs in either school since they both have connections to the ZSL. My main question is about the day to day life between the center of London and Silwood Park near Ascot. I've grown up in a huge city so moving to London isn't a huge "need" for me, but I'm wondering how that will compare to the postgrad Silwood campus that seems very isolated and small (are there even grocery stores nearby?) I finished undergrad at a very small rural college in NY (<3000 students), and I think another environment like that would make me go stir crazy. On the other hand, I left NYC in order to focus on my degree, so I'm wondering how living in London will affect me in such a work-intensive program. ANY insights or anecdotes would be well appreciated!

Besides this daily life, any extra comments or firsthand experiences on either program would be super helpful, too! The academic environment, time devoted to developing project ideas, the level of student support etc etc. Thanks so much!
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Gemini4601
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I appreciate you saying this, but I think if I'll be spending 52 weeks focused on research, it might be conducive to know that I'll be able to go out on the weekends to take a mental break. Unfortunately I'm not a machine and I know my own limitations to dealing with pressure. I'm well aware of the academic expectations which is why I didn't ask about them, and I want to find the program that's the right fit for me considering all these costs - but thank you for the patronizing comment anyway!
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alleycat393
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Err you're welcome for the advice Maybe instead of seeing it as patronising appreciate the fact that you are being told that you won't have the time to worry much about a social life from someone with experience of research courses. Oh and the fact that no employer will ask you about your social life and this one year of hard work will fade into nothingness in the grand scheme of things. Also is the fact that if you plan to work in this field you may spend a lot of time at sites which are far away from a city.

Silwood Park is only an hour from London so you can easily get to London for weekends though again I doubt you will spend much time socialising given the intensity of the courses. Good luck!
(Original post by Gemini4601)
I appreciate you saying this, but I think if I'll be spending 52 weeks focused on research, it might be conducive to know that I'll be able to go out on the weekends to take a mental break. Unfortunately I'm not a machine and I know my own limitations to dealing with pressure. I'm well aware of the academic expectations which is why I didn't ask about them, and I want to find the program that's the right fit for me considering all these costs - but thank you for the patronizing comment anyway!
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RosieOof
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(Original post by Gemini4601)
Hello! I'm currently debating between my acceptances to the MRes Ecology, Evolution and Conservation Research program at Imperial and the Biodiversity, Evolution and Conservation MRes at UCL.

I'm from NYC and looking forward to the research programs in either school since they both have connections to the ZSL. My main question is about the day to day life between the center of London and Silwood Park near Ascot. I've grown up in a huge city so moving to London isn't a huge "need" for me, but I'm wondering how that will compare to the postgrad Silwood campus that seems very isolated and small (are there even grocery stores nearby?) I finished undergrad at a very small rural college in NY (<3000 students), and I think another environment like that would make me go stir crazy. On the other hand, I left NYC in order to focus on my degree, so I'm wondering how living in London will affect me in such a work-intensive program. ANY insights or anecdotes would be well appreciated!

Besides this daily life, any extra comments or firsthand experiences on either program would be super helpful, too! The academic environment, time devoted to developing project ideas, the level of student support etc etc. Thanks so much!
I'm also debating between the UCL MRes Biodiversity, Evolution and Conservation and another course at RVC. Unfortunately can't help you out much because I haven't done the course either obviously, but can answer any questions about London you might have as I grew up here Suuper helpful I know, sorry. I'm sure there is a well trodden Silwood Park to London path for evenings and weekends, because any students would go a bit bonkers if confined to a field in Surrey for too long. Don't know too much about the abundance of shops and stuff though, from google maps it does look quite sparse!
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