would u recommend going to NCS this summer in 2021??...Watch
Take it from someone that knows people who did it. It's not worth it! They will try and convince you that it improves your chance of going to uni and stuff but realistically its like a scout camp. Unless your'e doing it purely for the social aspect, then go for it!!! I'm sure you'll meet some great people.
you may love it though so if its something you want to do go for it (:
week 1: We did outdoor activities. We did not have to climb through caves or anything like the person above had to. I have heard your NCS experience can differ loads based on your location.
I went to Okehampton for this part and stayed at some youth hostel which wasn't the most pleasant experience sharing with two girls other girls crammed in a room but okay it was clean and sunny.
We did mountain bike riding (you could opt out of this), climbing on a climbing wall, assailing (that was fun), hiking, making your own rafts and going on the most disgusting lake you have ever seen my hair actually came out bright green afterwards. Every evening we were supposed to play sports but i refused to but had to sit on the grass for hours waiting for everyone to finish. There was the daily walk we had to do (ugh). There was also long periods of hanging around in the games room which only had a sofa and a pool table. The food was dire. So if you do go bring a book and download a netflix series on your phone.
week2: we stayed at a university. I stayed at Falmouth. I have heard other peoples experiences of week 2 are much better than this. This i think was because of our location. We did naff all.
We were supposed to learn uni skills like budgeting and cooking but it mostly involved just making pizza and the food given was like tesco value and really bad. I remember eating custard for lunch. I guess it is the uni experience haha. We did workshops on like sex ed and nutrition (nutrition was so bad). The evenings were more fun involving people hanging out in the corridors chatting and /or playing games like Uno and cards against humanities. We had more independence during this. We also had a bake off which was quite fun. So the evenings did make up for it and you were allowed to stay in your room and wander if you wanted to.
Week 3: fundraising. We organised a gig. I didnt help out loads because this wasn't my idea and i cant sing or play anything (everyone in my group could hence why it was chosen), so it sucked at times. I mostly spent the time going around asking people for money. I also didnt turn up on a few occasions and no one said anything. Although as this was held in a youth club you could do other things and all of the NCS groups were there. They needed the downstairs wall to be scraped off, plastered and have a mural painted over. I met a bunch of people this way.
Overall, it was okay. I am not a very sociable person and i was horribly depressed during this time hence why i was made to go on it. There were some good memories though and the friends i met are still my friends now. However, we probably wouldve met at college anyway. The organising a fundraiser and we did event planning at one point has been useful to put onto stuff. I dont necessarily put down NCS though i just say i have organised a fundraiser as it sounds a bit better.
Did it help me get into university? No. Was it very useful? No. However, i dont necessarily regret it. It was something to do over summer and it meant going into college was so much easier as everyone knew me and i knew what it was going to be like. Plus so many people disliked NCS/ were forced on it that you could come together and laugh about it. I think if you aren't depressed and more sociable maybe you have a blast. I know some of my friends say it is the best thing they've done.
After NCS you can actually use it to get into groups that actually help you to get into uni. Theres an NCS youth group and you can go through the ranks in that and theres a national and international? level of it which looks really good. Plus there are more politics related groups and fundraising groups that you have to apply and be selected for i think and loads of NCS people get in. They come and advertise it to you whilst you are there and i regret not singing up as apparently they were actually good.
I went on the three week program so for me it was as follows:
Phase One -
This is adventure week, personally my group went to Kingswood in Doncaster. We did three activities per day iirc like Jacobs Ladder, Rock Climbing, Zipwire, Archery, Rowing, Rafting, Abseiling, Scavenger Hunts, Team Bonding activities etc. Honestly, the first week is super super fun and you won't really be bored. There's also things like camp fire nights and just more chilled game nights with your group where you may play cards.
Phase Two -
This is the residential week. Personally, my group went to the University of Essex. We stayed in their dorms and we got a taster of university life. I can't remember loads about this week but you get quite a lot of freedom, there's sessions like sex ed, metal health, sea life pollution and stuff that we needed to attended but there's activities to make it fun. Like we put condoms on dildos, made vision boards and did a craft project for the sea life stuff. You also get a hint of the party life and we got to use their night club one night.
Phase Three -
This is the community week. This will be local to your home and you will carry out a project in your community. This often includes fundraising then carrying out your project. My group did a bake sale and raised like £100 then we did up an old peoples home garden by making it more sensory etc.
If you go on the 4 week program your phase three will be two weeks instead of one week, but honestly the third week was my least fave and it's when you are just in your group theres no more meeting people outside of that group so I think the three week program is enough!
I really do recommend it, I made 6 really good friends there and we all still travel and meet up from time to time. It definitely is an experience I feel you will benefit more from if you go alone, quite a lot of people do and its a time to meet people rather than feeling like you owe something to your former peers.
It is good for the social aspect but it doesn't really have an affect on the uni aspect of life.
You meet a whole new bunch of people and learn to do stuff as a team.
Phase 1- Adventure
You do stuff that really brings you out of your comfort zone. I had to a hike, climbing walls and a scavenger hunt.
Phase 1 is the teamworking and the teambuilding phase. You spend more time with your team and learning about them.
Phase 2- Independence
You stay somewhere, alone (with your team) and you cook for yourself.
You also will have to plan and get your team ready for the next phase. You plan what you're gonna do and how you will raise money for your charity
Phase 3- Charitable Endeavours
You raise money for the charity or cause, given to you.
All in all it was enjoyable and you become a real tight-knit family.....I suggest you go just for the social aspect.
Its an National Citizen Service and its like camping where u meet with random people and become friends with them........
My 3 week programme looked along the lines of
Week 1. The adventure week (The best out of the three) Do activities ranging from boring like Ice Breakers and mountain bikes but in a field lol. To the more interesting such as Leap of faith, rock climbing it is sort of a glorified scout camp but socially it is completely different and I guess it all comes down to the operator, the camp site and who is on it.
Week 2. Was at a more local campsite the purpose of this was to build us up to a social action project, so this was more a week with the people specific to your group and evenings with everyone else. My group was "Digital" so we had a trip to the BBC at Broadcasting tower and another to the Department of Digital media, culture and sport and basically did a workshop there I don't fully remember and the other days we basically develop out idea for week 3
Week 3. was putting the social action project into action and maybe visiting the other groups events. My group made a podcast and so spent 1 day in a recording studio and spent the other days advertising and had 2 workshops in areas of significant to our podcast. The podcast is still going to this day and although it is not in an area of my interest I have stuck with it and the group has actually expanded from member from other groups on NCS and surrounding areas.
I think that NCS is less exciting than advertised unless you get lucky but as a whole I enjoyed it and not being that sociable I have come out with a lot of new friends. They will bombard you with emails and calls once you have signed up but if you just answer they will leave you alone ( think it was just our organisers being annoying). I think that the supposed uni benefits are limited but at the same time it does look good from a perspective of Leadership teamwork etc all things you can milk on a CV lol.
All in all I would recommend