University of St Andrews
One in the pipeline. Four years and counting now so don't hold your breath.
The Students' Association's Monthly newspaper / comic is free. This contains Association news and keeps students up to date with planned events. This is somewhat the mouthpiece of the Association itself. It's production is pretty irregular which is a bit of a gripe.
This is an independent rag run by a group of volunteer students. Unusually, as far as student press goes, you have to pay for it, it's 50p. Allegations of being cliquey, slanted and has a quite high retraction rate. Classic uni paper then.
The University has also just been granted £1.5 million for a new solid state materials research centre - in order to spearhead research into fuel-cells.
Alex Salmond - former leader of the SNP.
Edward Jenner - fought smallpox with cowpox.
Fay Weldon - eminent feminist writer.
The Main Bar - In their extensive new refurbishment, the establishment overlooked the name. A popular warm-up bar on Friday and Saturday nights, it won't be long before the thronging crowd of students clogging up the bar get the place back to the state it was in before - so enjoy it while it lasts.
Venue 1 - The main Association venue, where everyone gets hot and sweaty dancing to the latest chart and dance music as well as the old favorites. There have also been some good bands here in recent times.
Venue 2 - Upstairs. A clubby atmosphere, that often plays host to student and local bands but usually acts as the overflow for Venue 1.
You'll probably spend a lot of time at these venues as St Andrews is a very student based town with very little in the way of nightclubs. There may not be much choice and the bars don't sound exotic by name, but with an appetite for a fun night you'll have a great time. Union bars are the cheapest places to drink but aren't actually that cheap.
Local Area However, the great thing about St. Andrews is the number of local pubs. Good local establishments include:
Drouthy Neebors (ales, drinks promotions etc., friendly, & Giant Jenga!);
The Tudor (nice and quiet but picks up on weekends);
The Whey Pat (smoky pub where locals & student societies tend to meet up - good quiz on Tue);
Also, if you're into cheesy music and often terrible karaoke there's always The Vic (not my idea of a good Fri or Sat but always packed - plus drinks promotions).
Almost all bars are open until 1am. Thanks to Greg who helped with this info.
Thursdays - Cheese Night, best of seventies, eighties and nineties, be careful of Friday morning lectures as its easy to get carried away. Especially if you are a cheesoholic because: Fridays - Are also cheesy nights with Megabop an end of the week carnage bash to the latest chart hits. Saturdays - Provide a little bit of relief for the rest of you in the form of Dance Night. Apart from the above the Union does diversify with other bars hosting local and student live bands.
The Union doesn't actually run a summer ball, but don't look away - it is run by the Kate Kennedy Club which is a local organisation. November plays host to the Raisin Weekends one of St Andrews' many wacky traditions where new students are "adopted" by older years. Apart from this the Union runs an Athletic Union Ball for prizes and whatnot - a more civilised affair than the other rugby dominated unions around the country! It goes without saying that there is Freshers' Week to break the ice between everyone - with lashings of St Andrews quirky ceremony.
There are over 100 societies (sports and other) and it is particularly biased away from sports compared to elsewhere Music and Operatic Societies are strong. Alternative Music is now the largest. When it passed Christian Union in size, it gave itself the informal tagline of 'bigger than Jesus'. There are a throng of inactive academic societies. Particular doses of eccentricity are to be found amongst the membership of the Dead Parrot Society and the Caramel Wafer Appreciation Society.
Most students will live in halls for three out of their four years, but for first years it is guaranteed.
Generally, all halls rooms have telephones and internet access, and there are usually computer rooms on site (or nearby). Most of the halls have a small library, but their selection of books varies.
Albany Park Tends to be the enclave of the less typical St Andrews student. Commonly known as "Gatty", this hall houses mainly second and third years and is recognised as value for money and has good facilities - six bedrooms to every kitchen and common room. Also has communal study area and launderette.
Andrew Melville Hall - looks like a concrete egg-box, and the food ain't great but the atmosphere is buzzing and the Hall Ball is one of the best.
David Russell Hall - A bit far out and without a dining hall. On the other hand the snack bar is very cheap and popular, it has good facilities - music room, games room, library, Sky TV, launderette, computer room and internet networked rooms.
Dean's Court - Small postgraduate halls, housed in a building full of character.
Fife Park - Dominated by Second and Third years, friendly and cheap but as a first year you probably won't get a place here.
Hamilton Hall - Small and friendly undergrad hall. Facilities here are very good for the size, including: library, computer room, reading rooms, two TV rooms and a large function room. The tradition here is as old the gothic building that houses it with formal gowned dinners being held every month.
John Burnett Hall - Still called Atholl (as it was called when it was a hotel), JB is a small and perhaps cliquey hall since everyone knows everybody here. It boasts a sweet shop and a spendid front hall which hosts the best parties in town. The Hall Ball is second only to the Kate Kennedy May Ball.
St Salvators Hall - Sallies is similar to Atholl in its appetite for parties - beach and garden parties, pub crawls etc. and is one of the most prestigious halls with a newly refurbished interior housed in a magnificent Jacobean building.
McIntosh Hall - Chattan (as it was called when it was a hotel), has an excellent location near to everything on campus, and as an all-round experience for first years is recommended as such.
University Hall - Castle-like hall that is strong on tradition. Boasts: tennis courts, table tennis room, libraries, computer rooms, music rooms and possible ghost! Apologies: ten minutes out of town, washing machines need replacing.
St Regulus - Reg's hall is small and does not have as many in house facilities. Good kitchens make up for the lacklustre food in the dining-halls.
New Hall - Largest and possibly most luxurious of Halls - it has been likened to a Trusthouse Forte! Double beds and ensuite bathrooms, a general store, cash machine, snack bar, proximity of AU and lecture theatres and large common room are the plus sides. Go for catered accommodation though, otherwise the size of Hall may bring loneliness to first years.
According to some students, finding accommodation in the town is very tough. Get started early or you will end up scratching around. Sports teams are always a good place to start as houses tend to get handed down. Most people we talked to told cautionary tales of how slackers would end up paying £70 per week for rent. This is pricey for Scotland but put in perspective £70 per week is a pipe dream for students in London or Surrey.
St Andrews is located about an hour's travel away from Edinburgh and 20 minutes from Dundee. The place is home to the world famous Royal and Ancient golf course - the birthplace of golf. The University makes up much of the sea-side town and is its largest employer - hence the place takes on ghost-town status during the holidays.
For places to eat out, go to The Grill House, for Mexican food, and The Dolls House, for general top nosh!
As for pubs, there are more per area than any other town in the UK (you can certainly tell that you're in Scotland!). Recommended ones are The Vic which has a popular Karaoke night on Fridays.
At New Hall there is lots of parking but many students will want to drive into town for lectures and shopping. The parking isn't very good for the other halls but you can get street permits although these are naturally quite expensive.
There are cash machines around campus and also next to New Hall. However the university is based in and around the town so access to banks isn't really a problem here.
Many of the halls of residence and university buildings are very old and there maybe difficulties from the access point of view. However there are lifts in the Student Association Building.
BESS is the Student Association's shop and sells stationery, cigarettes, cards, snacks, drinks and anything else you might want? This is also where you get your academic gowns from. The Bookshop in the building is James Thin. There is a snack bar called Get Stuffed for those peckish moments during the day. The Association also runs a Travel Agent service which will provide discounts on all modes of transport. Off-sales is the campus off-licence which sells very cheap booze and it doesn't close until midnight!
The James Thin bookshop in the Union building will order in all course texts that you might need. Alternatively there is also a Association-run Second Hand Bookshop which is a safe bet as many people just stick their recommended texts on their bookshelves to gather dust for a year.
Facilities here are generally to a high standard, there are some excellent astro-turf all weather pitches and an athletics track. The sports centre houses squash courts, gym, basketball court and aerobics/training rooms. There are also tennis courts at various locations throughout the town. The University has recently pumped alot of money into sports as part of its new elite-sports programme.
The Student Association runs a Late Bus which is run by Stagecoach from the Student Association to the Outer Halls of Residence on Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights. There is a small fee of 50p for the service.
There is greenery all around, not least because of the proximity of the Royal and Ancient Golf Club. If you can stand the isolation in terms of distance to large cities, then you will find this a very balanced place to study the town is fairly self-contained with beautiful surroundings, and while there is green on one side there is blue on the other.
The University Library apparently has over 750,000 books, which is a hell of a lot for a university of this size. Around 250,000 are special collection items. In terms of the books you'll actually want to use for essays and stuff then it's not so rosy, feedback surveys all indicate that people generally have a problem getting the texts they want.
There are computer labs all around town with 24 hour access which is pretty good compared to most Unis. All the halls are internet connected and some have separate computer rooms. In general computer access is very good.
The Student Support Service consists of three part-time counsellors and other staff who can provide advice on all areas and problems including disabled issues, international students issues, legal problems, dyslexia etc. Unusually this service is run by the university and not the the union. You might think this could cause problems but it's very well-resourced and drop out rates are low. The University also has a daycare nursery.