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In this issue we speak to Melissa Heth, an archaeology student who lives at St. Thomas Moore College, about uni life and living at college.
Melissa also talks about the amenities, the Student Club, support services, why she chose UWA and her course, as well as an host of other topics.
What are the college amenities like, Melissa?
It's easy. Everything you need is right here. Board includes three meals a day and our rooms are cleaned once a week. Linen is provided and collected for cleaning once a week when the cleaning staff visit. In the Junior Common room there is the ‘Tucky' for those late night visits, a mini-cinema, pool tables, and couches for reading the newspaper. There is also a Senior Common Room for the older students. I enjoy studying out on the on the lawns around college, and on a warm day there will often be a group of students lying out on towels, catching up on study and soaking up some rays. Kings Park is right out the back door, and it is nice to stroll through the parks trails. The Uni is just across the road, an easy stroll through the Campus Rec Centre.
What kind of things can you get involved in at College?
Every year the Student Club organises a calendar of events for students get involved in. There are orientation activities for the first years, such as dragon boat races which are a must-see. There is the college ball, formal dinners and a lot more. You also have the opportunity to join in inter-college parties and events and sports competitions.
What support services are available to the students at the college?
There is always someone here to help you out of a sticky spot, like if you have locked yourself out of your room or just need someone to talk to. All the staff here are great people and they are happy to help if you have any problems or want to make any suggestions. Also, with such a great location, all the student support programs provided through the university are just an easy walk across the road.
Best thing about living at a College?
The friends I have made! Also, college is a great opportunity to meet people from all over the world. Every semester new international students arrive, so you end up with friends all over the world. Then there are the great events, such as college balls and parties. It makes keeping up with your social life a breeze.
Would you recommend living at College?
Yes, definitely; especially during your first year of study. I have had access to an excellent friend and support network here at Tommy. It is a friendly, vibrant community for you to make great friends outside your classes. The location is excellent. Also the essential services provided for you, like food and cleaning, takes away some of the stress of your first year.
What made you decide to study at UWA?
I fell in love with the beautiful UWA campus at age 13, when my family dropped my sister off here to start her degree.
Also, UWA is the only university in WA that offers Archaeology as a degree through a Bachelor of Science or Arts, and I wanted to stay close to home. UWA is recognised internationally and the Uni also offers great opportunities for students looking to go on exchange. I've just come home from a semester's study at the University of Michigan and I had a great time. I recommend it for anyone!
Why did you choose the particular course you did?
I'd like to say I watched too much Indiana Jones as a child, but the real reason is I love history and I love the outdoors. Studying Archaeology gives me the chance to study my history, to keep up with my outdoors skills, travel, and to answer some of those questions about our human past which are still hanging...by trying to answer questions about past cultures, and other cultures we share the world with, we can better our own lives and our future.
What are you planning to do when you finish your degree?
I'm keeping an open mind at the moment, as every semester opens up a new world of interest and opportunity. I plan to do my honours, after which I hope to work in the field.
My degree is a double major in Archaeology and Anthropology, so I hope to end up working in an area that combines both. I think there are two subjects that all cultures can talk about, no matter how different they are, and that is food and language. For example, I find it interesting how something so simple like diet, actually is a means of bringing people together as a basis of social interaction. Eventually, I would like to break into the world of research, so I look towards Post-grad studies either in Australia or overseas.
Do you have any advice for future students of your course?
Work hard, don't do drugs...really. No, I found even the simplest thing, like attending all my lectures, asking questions and talking to my professors a great first step as the Archaeology Department at UWA is quite a small. The Archaeology Club helps students get involved in excavations. Also I got a work experience position, which I love. Finding out what Archaeologists do in the real world, outside of movies is a great way for you to decide if you are in the right course!
Describe your typical day from waking to sleeping:
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