Exeter students in Cornwall are real and we’re better than you

We even have Starbucks

Cornwall Exeter exeter university Penryn the tab

I’m a student at the University of Exeter’s Penryn Campus.

Now I understand for all intents and purposes I might as well have said I live in the University of Swaziland’s Mbongo campus, for all you know about Penryn. Believe it or not, Exeter does indeed have campuses besides Streatham. We’re real and, we’re better than you.

Penryn Campus is in Cornwall (“Cornwall has universities? This article just keeps getting crazier”, you mumble to yourself), which as you all know, is a holiday destination on par with Ibiza and Malia. We have not one, but two clubs on offer for a mad night out on a Thursday student night. Club I (which stands for ‘international’ because people from places as exotic as Wales occasionally go there) in nearby Falmouth has a reputation for hospitalising even the hardiest of clubbers.

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On a mad wun 

If the clubs in Falmouth are too much for you, then you might consider a flat party – although play music after 11 and security will shut it down while pleasantly acknowledging the group of stoners smoking nearby.

We Exeter students share the campus with those from Falmouth University, an institution dedicated to the arts, which you may or may not have heard of depending on whether you considered taking a course like Dance or Drawing BA. So our campus is two unis in one: awkward Exeter bookworms are forced to mix with vibrant Falmouth artistic types.

Imagine if Bob Marley and Bill Gates were roommates, and you might get an inkling of what life is like here.

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Just your average Exeter student

Because of the size of the campus, it’s possible to walk from my flat to the most distant lecture hall in less than 10 minutes. This doesn’t stop Falmouth students from feeling the need to skateboard, rollerblade and/or unicycle their way to lectures (though if they’re doing Marine Photography BA then they’ll simply go to the nearest beach).

On main campuses, you have to navigate through a dense urban jungle, where there are more Starbucks and kebab shops than there are academic buildings.

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On Penryn Campus, you get all the benefits living in the extreme South West, and more. It takes a special kind of person to actually choose to study for a degree in Cornwall, the land of ice cream, surfing and UKIP, and we are fanatically devoted to our location.

Virtually everyone here has a picture of some Cornish landscape they took on their phone as their Facebook cover photo, and we wouldn’t have it any other way.

For us the idea of living in a city is equivalent to living in a giant prison, with walls made of Tesco Express and M&S (although what student actually shops in M&S – unless you go somewhere like Durham where you compensate for your failure to get into Oxbridge by spending £6.99 on a crème brûlée).

Poor man's crème brulee

Poor man’s crème brulee

Occasionally rumours leak down to us from the main campus in Exeter, and we shudder at the realities of life there, and in main campuses around the country. Supermarkets other than Asda and Lidl. People who don’t pronounce the letter ‘r’. Northerners. The list of horrors goes on.

But these things seem a hundred miles away (literally) when we’re on the local beach which has a name that sounds Welsh but isn’t, relaxing under a palm tree with a cool glass of quaint Cornish cider. You can keep the watery Americano you bought from one of 44 cafes on your campus, because we’re staying right here.

This photo definitely wasn't taken in January

This photo definitely wasn’t taken in January