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Chemistry Research, Durham University
Durham University
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Best college for me as a black, working-class girl?

I’m a black, working-class girl that has
received an unconditional offer to study at Durham for a masters in Social Work. I’ve already come to terms with the fact that Durham is not diverse and there are concerns about classism, so I’m ready for just about anything.

I’m trying to choose a college, but I’m totally unsure as to which to choose. I’ve read ALL of the college pages inside and out, I’ve narrowed it down to wanting to have a self-catered and non-gowned (not completely opposed to gowned but would ultimately like non-gowned). I may consider Collingwood even though it is catered because I really love the vibe, but not sure. Ustinov is nice, considering that it is for postgrads only but not 100% sure about it.

I’ve falling in love with some of the bailey colleges such as St John’s and St Chad’s, but I’ve heard negative things about the Bailey colleges in relation to black students, and that Hill colleges would be better.

I’m an extroverted introvert, I would love to be social, go to formals and everything! I also want a feeling of community as well and good societies to get involved in!

Which would be the best college for me do you think? In terms of inclusion, diversity and the social life, but a sense of community?
Original post by Anonymous
I’m a black, working-class girl that has
received an unconditional offer to study at Durham for a masters in Social Work. I’ve already come to terms with the fact that Durham is not diverse and there are concerns about classism, so I’m ready for just about anything.

I’m trying to choose a college, but I’m totally unsure as to which to choose. I’ve read ALL of the college pages inside and out, I’ve narrowed it down to wanting to have a self-catered and non-gowned (not completely opposed to gowned but would ultimately like non-gowned). I may consider Collingwood even though it is catered because I really love the vibe, but not sure. Ustinov is nice, considering that it is for postgrads only but not 100% sure about it.

I’ve falling in love with some of the bailey colleges such as St John’s and St Chad’s, but I’ve heard negative things about the Bailey colleges in relation to black students, and that Hill colleges would be better.

I’m an extroverted introvert, I would love to be social, go to formals and everything! I also want a feeling of community as well and good societies to get involved in!

Which would be the best college for me do you think? In terms of inclusion, diversity and the social life, but a sense of community?


Hi there

Love how you've done so much research into the colleges, hopefully I can help you out some more! To be very honest, there are misconceptions around several colleges- hill colleges being better than bailey ones because of race etc- I don't find those to be true. Negative experiences are more likely to be shared online than good ones, tarnishing the image of the college/uni as a whole. I'm not saying Durham or any college is perfect, but we shouldn't take just the negative experiences into account when forming an opinion. Others' experiences can never determine what experiences you can have, so I always suggest going with an open mind.

All colleges are diverse and have a good mix of students but because the hill colleges are much larger than the bailey ones, they tend to have more diversity. Given that you're extroverted, the bigger colleges might therefore give you more opportunities to socialise and meet a wide range of people. The best way to move forward is to be firm on whether you want catered or self-catered as that will massively help you narrow down your choices. Most self-catered hill colleges have gowned PG formals so I wouldn't recommend being too stuck on that aspect unless it's extremely important to you. Given this, you seem to be drawn towards self-catered hill colleges so Grey, John Snow, JoBo, South, Aidans, Stephenson might be good fits. Also consider Castle if you prefer the bailey and want a big college.

Hope that helps! Feel free to inquire further and I'd be more than happy to help :smile:

-Himieka
Chemistry Research, Durham University
Durham University
Durham
Visit website
Original post by Anonymous
I’m a black, working-class girl that has
received an unconditional offer to study at Durham for a masters in Social Work. I’ve already come to terms with the fact that Durham is not diverse and there are concerns about classism, so I’m ready for just about anything.

I’m trying to choose a college, but I’m totally unsure as to which to choose. I’ve read ALL of the college pages inside and out, I’ve narrowed it down to wanting to have a self-catered and non-gowned (not completely opposed to gowned but would ultimately like non-gowned). I may consider Collingwood even though it is catered because I really love the vibe, but not sure. Ustinov is nice, considering that it is for postgrads only but not 100% sure about it.

I’ve falling in love with some of the bailey colleges such as St John’s and St Chad’s, but I’ve heard negative things about the Bailey colleges in relation to black students, and that Hill colleges would be better.

I’m an extroverted introvert, I would love to be social, go to formals and everything! I also want a feeling of community as well and good societies to get involved in!

Which would be the best college for me do you think? In terms of inclusion, diversity and the social life, but a sense of community?

hey. I'm a black middle-classed student in Durham (currently in 1st year). I also had this issue when I was picking my colleges. I chose John Snow and I do not regret it. It's fairly diverse and in my flat, there's a mix of different cultures. I won't lie and say there's tons of diversity however you can always form your own small community if need be. John Snow is a formal college as well and the majority of rooms are en-suite self-catered (if you don't get an en-suite room and end up in a townhouse, you only share a bathroom with one other person). I would say that one thing about it is that it's further away from the bailey colleges but close to a lot of other colleges such as south, van mildert and aiden's so you'll always be able to social outside of the colleges as well.

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