Our graduates

  • Lucy Bell (MA Modern History, currently studying PhD History)
  • BA History
  • Graduated 2013
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Why did you decide to study history at Sheffield?

Sheffield offered the complete package - a department of top academics, both in research and teaching, a fantastically friendly and surprisingly green city, and a university with a great reputation for delivering the full student experience. The department impressed me when I came to visit, in terms of both facilities and the variety offered on the course.

I started university life studying joint honours history and politics as I was keenly involved in politics and enjoyed British political history. Sheffield offered the opportunity for many interesting joint honours combinations. However, I found that the theoretical side of the politics course wasn't for me and was fortunate enough to transfer to single honours in my second year, where my interest in British political history continued to flourish.

What did you particularly enjoy about your degree?

The course offered the perfect balance of breadth and depth. It equipped you with the vital tools to contextualise your particular areas of interest, while allowing you, particularly in the third year, to get to truly immerse yourself in the material that really captures your imagination. The staff at Sheffield were brilliant at encouraging you to follow new interests, however niche they may have seemed.

What did you like about the University and living in Sheffield?

The University has a great sense of community, and a varied one too. The department was incredibly supportive and sensitive to any personal problems. The union is one of the best in the country and continues to be developed.

Renting in popular student areas is very affordable and you get great value - discounted public transport for students, university accommodation schemes and student discounts city-wide on everything from clothes to food.

What did you do after graduation?

I was lucky enough to receive a departmental scholarship and I am now studying MA Modern History at Sheffield. I enjoyed my experience as an undergraduate so much so that I was keen to extend my stay.

What top tips would you give to someone thinking about coming here to study?

Firstly, come and see Sheffield! You'll only understand our enthusiasm for the university and the city when you've witnessed it yourself.

If you decide to stay, get involved with anything and everything that takes your fancy, from societies to committees. There are lots of opportunities and I'd be very surprised if you didn't find anything.

Remember that can also apply to your academic work too, even if that doesn't interest you all of the time. If you can truly engage with the course material, you'll find the whole experience much more fruitful. If you can impress your tutors face-to-face, you'll also come out of the other side with some good references too - essential for any CV!

Don't expect the interests you leave with to be the same as when you arrive - history at Sheffield will open your eyes to more than just Nazi history or the Russian Revolution as you might have studied at A Level. If you find something interesting, go and read about it. You never know where it might lead you, particularly when it comes to writing that third year dissertation.

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