First the worst second the best
Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) has released a list ranking the best student cities on 15th February 2012. London is second, behind Paris.
Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) has released a list ranking the best student cities on 15th February 2012. London is second, behind Paris. QS is also responsible for the QS World University Rankings, where UCL is ranked 7th.
London is one of four UK cities charting on QS’s Top 50 – Manchester at #35, Birmingham at #47, and Glasgow squeezing in at #50.
QS believes that London’s expensive living costs have cost her the #1 ranking. Tuition fees for international students are already skyhigh, fees for local and EU students have now been raised too. Rent, food and living costs continue to deter many.
Still, there is nothing surprising that hordes of students continue to flood into London. Has London’s appeal suffered for its costs? I pay the fees for international students, and I think it hasn’t.
With quality of education in mind, London’s greatest attractions are her universities. I would base my decision on which offer to accept, more on the the World University Rankings rather than Best Student Cities Rankings.
Still, being situated in London is a plus for UCL’s appeal.
If every city had a trademark dish, London would offer a buffet. London offers something for everyone. There are museums and landmarks for the culture/act junkies. Fashion-mongers get the usual high-street and luxury options with the pleasures of flea markets, surplus stores, and up-and-coming design. Culinary enthusiasts try to beat the clock – 5 new options pop up with every restaurant they cross out from their lists.
London is where individuality is accepted and encouraged, and also where you will always find someone like yourself. The hope of meeting someone like-minded is constantly fueled by the city’s diversity, and maybe a drink or two.
London keeps students occupied with options – placing Chinatown right next to Soho and the West End. At the same time, students stay optimistic with the sight of some future good – gazing across the road to Primrose Hill while on a night out in Camden.
Options come with a price, and London’s (lack of) affordability is literally that price. Personally, I think you get a lot of bang for the buck you give – in both quality of education and life.
It doesn’t really matter that London isn’t in 1st place. I would have chosen London anyway, and I am confident that many of my peers would too. If we wanted a life-changing experience in a city, we’d be there for a gap year instead.