Student Ambassador: Alia Eyres

Alia Eyres

Year: First

Subject: French & Spanish

Where are you from: Lancashire

Best thing about Merton?

The best thing about Merton is definitely the people. Coming from a massive sixth form college, I love walking through Merton and being able to say hello to almost everyone I pass. The friends I have made are amazing and supportive, and there’s generally someone in college who will help out if you’re ever struggling with anything, from an essay crisis to a fancy-dress emergency!

How do you cope with the workload?

The workload can feel like a shock at first, but you soon get used to it. Each week I make a ‘to do’ list which is colour-coded according to deadlines and subjects, then I decide what to focus on each day and try to stick to it. I try to vary the work I am doing each day, so when I’m not in lectures or classes, I might spend a few hours on translation or grammar work before swopping to reading for that week’s essay. Personally I find it easier to write up an essay over a single day, so I tend to set aside the day before the weekly deadline to actually compose the essay, once I’ve done plenty of reading and planned my argument.

What do you do when you’re not working?

When I’m not working, I enjoy taking part in various musical activities, from the Oxford University Orchestra to open mic nights in college. I also translate articles for a publication called R:Ed Oxford, which gives me a completely different style of translation practice to the passages I translate for my course. One of my favourite things to do is cooking and eating with my friends, then chatting or watching a film in one of our rooms.

What do you do in the holidays?

In the shorter holidays I usually stay at home to relax with my family and catch up with friends from school. I always have reading to do to prepare for the next term, as well as revision of the last term’s work for the Collections (mock exams) that we sit at the start of each term. In the long summer holidays, I’m planning to work to top up next year’s maintenance loan.