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please help me decide! manchester v kings college london

hiii , i have offers for both uni of manchester and kcl to study international business management / business management. with a contextual offer, id have to get the same grades for both so that isnt a problem. i would eventually want to go into finance/consulting/ something in the business sector, perhaps in america where the money is at, so a good year abroad is important to me. my choices are as follows:

1. manchester: intl management, good reputation, great year abroad choices ( think uni of south california LA, nyu ) - i loved the campus and vibe when i visited. however, i live in mcr so i would live with my parents and commute, potentially missing out on the accom student experience. also not close to big firms like london is.

2. kings college london: bis mgmt, great reputation, study abroad options are small in usa, only upenn ( ivy league but in the middle of nowhere ) - also liked the campus when i visited, but my accom would be 8 miles away , meaning 45min daily public transport required, and accommodation is in a fairly bad area. very expensive, but full of opportunities.

i would pick london due to the worldwide reputation and to get the full experience, but i would pick manchester due to the significantly lower costs and way nicer year abroad options. i am the MOST indecisive person ever. cant even pick a dinner meal, nevermind a uni. PLS HELP :smile:

if you are a student at either of these or have any insights please reply xx
Go to King's, living at home during uni is a horrible experience
This is very much a personal choice - its all down to where you will feel the most comfortable, and the course that will interest you the most. However, a few things to think about.

KCL has a poor reputation for how it treats its undergrad students. Despite what many school-leavers believe, 'being in London' does not noticeably improve your career prospects. Its also expensive, and as you have realised travel etc brings additional issues.

Manchester is not in any way second-best - its a target Uni for employers. Any sort of 'extra' like Study Abroad or a work placement adds enormously to your graduate CV. You could still live in student accommodation - either for your first year, a and/or joining a group of other students for a flat-share etc for 2nd year and beyond.
Original post by McGinger
This is very much a personal choice - its all down to where you will feel the most comfortable, and the course that will interest you the most. However, a few things to think about.
KCL has a poor reputation for how it treats its undergrad students. Despite what many school-leavers believe, 'being in London' does not noticeably improve your career prospects. Its also expensive, and as you have realised travel etc brings additional issues.
Manchester is not in any way second-best - its a target Uni for employers. Any sort of 'extra' like Study Abroad or a work placement adds enormously to your graduate CV. You could still live in student accommodation - either for your first year, a and/or joining a group of other students for a flat-share etc for 2nd year and beyond.


I agree, as a KCL grad that KCL is horrible at taking care of students. With it getting increasingly worse from dissertation supervisors taking holidays 1-3 weeks before deadlines, the CV team being replaced by a basically chatgpt type bot, etc.

I don't believe London has any advantages in terms of careers too. It is the most happening city in the country and probably the continent but for uni it's a double edged sword. The flip side is the large international population will exclusively only talk to their own races, not being close to your friendship group since it so large and it's also very very expensive.

But I still would think it provided a better social experience than living at home.
as McGinger said above, you don’t have to live at home first year or any year if choose to go to Manchester but if you were to do that for some or all of your degree, you can put aside savings for a deposit on somewhere to live longer term
you will leave with a degree every bit as competitive as the one from KCL when it comes to employers
-just be pro active with placements and other career opportunities
-take advantage of all the resources available to students, and attend the recruitment fairs! 😀
(edited 1 month ago)
Original post by McGinger
This is very much a personal choice - its all down to where you will feel the most comfortable, and the course that will interest you the most. However, a few things to think about.
KCL has a poor reputation for how it treats its undergrad students. Despite what many school-leavers believe, 'being in London' does not noticeably improve your career prospects. Its also expensive, and as you have realised travel etc brings additional issues.
Manchester is not in any way second-best - its a target Uni for employers. Any sort of 'extra' like Study Abroad or a work placement adds enormously to your graduate CV. You could still live in student accommodation - either for your first year, a and/or joining a group of other students for a flat-share etc for 2nd year and beyond.

thank you for your thoughts! regarding the career prospects, i would only be slightly inclined towards kings due to the name and how it would look on a cv especially to employers abroad, i feel like just the word “london” would sort of bring more attention than manchester would if that makes sense. however on the flip side, a year abroad studying in california would probably come with a lot of connections and would look good for employers in the states?
Original post by clauclauclau
thank you for your thoughts! regarding the career prospects, i would only be slightly inclined towards kings due to the name and how it would look on a cv especially to employers abroad, i feel like just the word “london” would sort of bring more attention than manchester would if that makes sense. however on the flip side, a year abroad studying in california would probably come with a lot of connections and would look good for employers in the states?

No difference in the reputation of King's or Manchester so the name of King's on your CV shouldn't be a deciding factor.

Having London on your CV won't make it more competitive really neither will California.

You're splitting hairs in terms of job prospects between Manchester and King's, just choose the uni with the course you like more & where you'd rather live.
Original post by clauclauclau
hiii , i have offers for both uni of manchester and kcl to study international business management / business management. with a contextual offer, id have to get the same grades for both so that isnt a problem. i would eventually want to go into finance/consulting/ something in the business sector, perhaps in america where the money is at, so a good year abroad is important to me. my choices are as follows:
1. manchester: intl management, good reputation, great year abroad choices ( think uni of south california LA, nyu ) - i loved the campus and vibe when i visited. however, i live in mcr so i would live with my parents and commute, potentially missing out on the accom student experience. also not close to big firms like london is.
2. kings college london: bis mgmt, great reputation, study abroad options are small in usa, only upenn ( ivy league but in the middle of nowhere ) - also liked the campus when i visited, but my accom would be 8 miles away , meaning 45min daily public transport required, and accommodation is in a fairly bad area. very expensive, but full of opportunities.
i would pick london due to the worldwide reputation and to get the full experience, but i would pick manchester due to the significantly lower costs and way nicer year abroad options. i am the MOST indecisive person ever. cant even pick a dinner meal, nevermind a uni. PLS HELP :smile:
if you are a student at either of these or have any insights please reply xx

I thing others have given very valuable insight so I think mine might just be on the smaller side of concern. I know you think Manchester has a greater range of year abroad choices which is true = well in terms of "range". Since you are studying int business mgt/business mgt KCL's opp to study at Penn, which ain't as isolated as you think as ivies like Cornell and Dartmouth, is absolutely amazing. Penn's Wharton is considered one of the best in business in the world and the connections you can make there > USC, NYU Stern.
Original post by clauclauclau
hiii , i have offers for both uni of manchester and kcl to study international business management / business management. with a contextual offer, id have to get the same grades for both so that isnt a problem. i would eventually want to go into finance/consulting/ something in the business sector, perhaps in america where the money is at, so a good year abroad is important to me. my choices are as follows:
1. manchester: intl management, good reputation, great year abroad choices ( think uni of south california LA, nyu ) - i loved the campus and vibe when i visited. however, i live in mcr so i would live with my parents and commute, potentially missing out on the accom student experience. also not close to big firms like london is.
2. kings college london: bis mgmt, great reputation, study abroad options are small in usa, only upenn ( ivy league but in the middle of nowhere ) - also liked the campus when i visited, but my accom would be 8 miles away , meaning 45min daily public transport required, and accommodation is in a fairly bad area. very expensive, but full of opportunities.
i would pick london due to the worldwide reputation and to get the full experience, but i would pick manchester due to the significantly lower costs and way nicer year abroad options. i am the MOST indecisive person ever. cant even pick a dinner meal, nevermind a uni. PLS HELP :smile:
if you are a student at either of these or have any insights please reply xx

If you can afford London, Kings. If you cant, Manchester
Original post by Wired_1800
If you can afford London, Kings. If you cant, Manchester

often agree with Wired (and always respect his view) but think this is too reductive as it implies London trumps Manchester when the reputations of both universities are high in this subject

the student in question has several considerations to weigh up
Original post by MedMama
often agree with Wired (and always respect his view) but think this is too reductive as it implies London trumps Manchester when the reputations of both universities are high in this subject
the student in question has several considerations to weigh up

Hello. You are right that there are many factors to consider but both unis are equally matched, in my view, hence location becomes the key factor for the applicant to maximise the opportunities in Finance and consulting.

The applicant’s penultimate paragraph was the trigger for me. If they can afford it, it makes logical sense to be in London close to the financial districts. If they cannot afford London, Manchester is equally strong as a uni.

I often give simple answers as I have realised that sometimes some individuals confuse the OP by providing more complex factors that increase the problem rather than provide a solution. To me, the choice would inevitably come down to costs as London can be expensive.
Original post by jumpman123
I agree, as a KCL grad that KCL is horrible at taking care of students. With it getting increasingly worse from dissertation supervisors taking holidays 1-3 weeks before deadlines, the CV team being replaced by a basically chatgpt type bot, etc.
I don't believe London has any advantages in terms of careers too. It is the most happening city in the country and probably the continent but for uni it's a double edged sword. The flip side is the large international population will exclusively only talk to their own races, not being close to your friendship group since it so large and it's also very very expensive.
But I still would think it provided a better social experience than living at home.

I am in a similar position, choosing between KCL and Bristol and one of my main concerns is the student life. Due to how expensive it is, spaced out campuses in the middle of London and large number of international students, I am worried about not having as great of a social life and struggling to make friends. At the same time I feel like id be throwing away an opportunity if I didn't go to London. How did you find the student experience at KCL and were there any other downsides to studying in London?
Original post by ellie6256
I am in a similar position, choosing between KCL and Bristol and one of my main concerns is the student life. Due to how expensive it is, spaced out campuses in the middle of London and large number of international students, I am worried about not having as great of a social life and struggling to make friends. At the same time I feel like id be throwing away an opportunity if I didn't go to London. How did you find the student experience at KCL and were there any other downsides to studying in London?

The social life is quite dreadful, because like you imagined, it's very difficult to meet people. With a large number of international students, there's often a splintering of your course cohort into race-based groups which is really sad. I grew up in London & the best thing is the ability to have friends of multiple backgrounds within the same group but uni in London is division by race. The lack of active societies only adds fuel to the fire of this since it's already very difficult with a largely international & hostile to Brits course & flat.

That being said this will only really be in courses which attract a large amount of international students such as Computer Science, Engineering, Economics, etc. My friends who did History or Politics or such loved their times in the capital.

The spaced-out campuses aren't the main problem, it's the spaced-out of accommodations. No one from your course will be willing to randomly get wasted drunk on Tesco's vodka in your room until 6 am if they have to travel from Southwark to Stratford after. There are other issues but you can probably figure it out such as distance from clubs, organising things, etc.

There's a plethora of other issues around the careers team, teaching, and admin too.

It's not all bad, living in Central London can be amazing, even as a native of the city. King's did have its moments, my department had great facilities. If you live in UoL halls you can have a great time & not rely on the flatmate lottery.

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