BSc (Hons) Chemistry
Final year student Patrycja shares seven key learnings, insights and tips for new students considering a Chemistry degree at Bradford.
1. Don't think you can't study in the UK
"I’m from Poland and was planning to do my degree there, but after meeting someone who’d studied in the UK, I was inspired to check it out for myself.
"At first I thought it wouldn’t be possible and that perhaps I wasn’t smart enough, but two weeks before the UK university applications deadline, I decided to just go for it. I’m so glad I did."
2. You don't need to be 100% dedicated to a chemistry career to do a chemistry degree
"I always enjoyed chemistry and life sciences at school, but I wasn’t certain that working in chemistry was the long-term career choice for me. I think you’re very lucky if you know exactly what you want to do at such a young age.
"I chose to study chemistry at Bradford because:
- I knew I'd enjoy it and was fairly good at it
- there was the possibility of studying abroad which appealed to me
- the work connections and industry links the university could give me
- it would give me enough skills and knowledge to work in various fields
"My advice is to just go for it; if you’re good at something, why not proceed with it?"
"The satisfaction you get when you do something right and get results is great! There’s also a lot of self-directed learning on the course which I find really inspiring.
"The teaching team really support you and show you the way, but you need to find the answers yourself.
"You get to do a lot of practical work in the chemistry labs on campus which directly prepares you for working in the industry. You get to practice using state-of-the-art machinery and equipment that you’ll use in real jobs.
"I’ve never even heard of some of the stuff we get to use. I particularly enjoy using the specimen equipment."
4. It's all about balance
"In the first year I put a lot of pressure on myself and made it all about studying and getting the best results. I’d pull all-nighters to get assignments done and generally felt overwhelmed and burnt out.
"Once I realised that wasn’t healthy, I prioritised my mental health and having a social life, and everything fell into place."
I never thought I’d be able to study forensic science and act as an investigator at a crime scene, but that’s the kind of thing you get to do on the Chemistry degree at Bradford! They make learning fun.
In my final year, I’ve worked on experiments that were directly inspired by synthesis reactions for anti-cancer drugs and maybe future cures for Alzheimer’s. Chemistry can create things that can save lives, and that’s amazing!
6. Take the study exchange option if you can
"I took part in the study exchange programme at Bradford and spent a year in Spain studying chemistry in 2021. It was a humbling life experience and made me so much more confident. I’d highly recommend it to anyone who is thinking about it."
"There are a lot of chemistry jobs in the NHS and in industry, but this degree also opens up a whole world of opportunities in the medical industry generally.
"You’ve got the basic skills to work in biology, as a biological engineer for example, or in physical sciences, too.
"You can also progress to a postgraduate qualification at Bradford with the MChem course, which is something I’m considering at the moment."
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