Wednesday, 28 September 2016

University Tales: My first week (and a bit)

Journey to Uni

Early in the morning on the 17th of September I was up and ready to start the 2hour journey to the University of Birmingham. I didn’t feel nervous or scared I just felt ready. Ready to finally leave my home town and go to University. 
I arrived, set up my room, met my housemates and chilled with my family. When my family left the morning after I expected to be hit with an overwhelming sense of loneliness but it didn’t come- I felt at home. 

Freshers Week 
Freshers week consisted of me getting lost on my way to the University, getting lost in the University, meeting people randomly and going out with them, chatting until late hours with my housemates and feeling incredibly tired by the end of the day. In addition to all of this there was the freshers and societies fair which were great. From the Refugees Welcome Society to the Women’s Association I found loads of interesting things to sign up to. There were also tons of freebies and it was a great way to meet other freshers (oohhh and get £1 Dominoes). 

Going Out (Exploring the Uni and the City)

There is this false perception that one HAS to party every single night during Freshers but that really isn’t the case. Freshers Week is what you make it. I went out with people, baked cupcakes in halls with some girls I met and spent some evenings at freshers event a local church was (which so far has been the best way to meet LOADS of people in a nice environment). Basically I spent the week really taking in the environment and going with the flow on my terms.

I really enjoyed Freshers Week because I did what I wanted to do. I wasn’t afraid to be alone sometimes, to start conversations with random people and to really embrace being in what seems to be a very disorganised atmosphere. 

As much as I poke fun at my disorganisation I really like structure but fresher’s week has no structure. Don’t get me wrong Bham had a clear timetable of events and kept you up to date about everything on social media, however University is a new environment so you don’t know where anything is and you also don’t know what you’re doing but the great thing is, no one does so you’re never alone.

My Conclusion about Freshers Week 
You can’t plan or control what is going to happen during fresher’s week. You will probably get lost, you will forget what events are going on, where and what time they are. You will meet random people in the most random situations but you just have to GO WITH IT ON YOUR OWN TERMS, DON'T DO WHAT YOU DON'T WANT TO DO BUT  BE OPEN TO NEW PEOPLE AND EXPERIENCES. 

I have had four lectures so far for my compulsory modules of:
Classical Political Thought
An Introduction to International Relations Theory 
Political Economy
Understanding Politics

As the lectures are for everyone who has Politics or International Relations named in their degree, I’m in a lecture hall with about 400 other students. For someone who comes from a very small sixth form it’s all so strange but I am looking forward to the lively discussions and opposing views during the lectures and seminars (which are with about 20 people). 

Final Words
So far, so good. I’m trying to get to grips with the idea that I will get things wrong, I will get lost and confused but it’ll all be fun if I keep an open mind. 

University is a bit of a jungle at the moment but my Uni has a great atmosphere and I’m really excited to start being part of societies ranging from sports to societies for ethnic minority students and feminists. 

I also seem to have a lot of passionate people on my course (Politics and International Relations) so I’m really looking forward to getting into debates, learning a lot and being exposed to different points of view. 

My hope 
I’m hoping to leave first term with a lot of knowledge about politics, a clearer idea of where things are on my campus and in the city and loads new experiences *fingers crossed*. 
I hope you all had a great Fresher’s Week and if you’ve just started or are starting soon GOOD LUCK

P.S. Remember to click here and vote for me as blogger of the month and here to check out my debut UCAS vlog. If you like this post make sure you share it as well.

Keep Smiling 
Itunu :)

Look at how pretty my University is!!!

Wednesday, 7 September 2016

Update: I'm going to University!!!

Hola Bonitos. It seems so bizarre to finally be writing this I AM GOING TO UNIVERSITY!!!

It’s been a long road *cue the dramatic music* and I thought I wouldn’t make it. There were tears, headaches, lessons where I sat there half-asleep, sleepless nights, mornings I Usain Bolt sprinted for the bus (eww) but it’s all over. I am finally going to the University of Birmingham to study Politics and International Relations and I am so (insert word for a culmination of every feeling ever).

The fact that I’m writing this one week before I pack my things and become a fully-fledged Brummie is a testament to the fact that I can’t believe this is happening. I don’t really know how to feel about it all. I am excited, but it’s the kind of excitement before you go on a rollercoaster. You stand in the queue buzzing but you’re also hoping that you don’t fall out of the ride or throw-up. It’s like excitement and fear mixed with confusion. Am I ready for this? Can I do this? Will I even like it?

There are so many questions but right now there aren’t any answers and I’m embracing that somewhat wholeheartedly. This is not a situation I can organise in chronological order, I just have to jump in.

The amount of advice I have received over the past few months is enough to write a whole other post. From ‘Stay away from ALL boys’ to ‘Make sure you go to seminars’, everyone has been intent on sharing their nuggets of wisdom with me. I thought if I could take into consideration all that has been said to me I could curate a fool-proof way to BOSS this University shebang. Like Ned’s Classified School Survival Guide but for University.

However, one piece of advice I will take to heart is that I should remember that this is my experience. As much as I should appreciate advice, I need to remember to focus on what I want to get out of University.

I’ve joined the University Facebook pages to stay in the loop, got my Freshers week ticket (we’ll see what’s going to happen about that) and received my accommodation and student ID card so it’s all getting a bit real.

But I am so ready (or at least embracing the fact that I’m not ready).
I’m planning to post every Thursday during my time at University so keep on the lookout for my University Tales from the 22nd of September.

If you’re going to The University of Birmingham, or you’re doing my course (Politics and International Relations) feel free to drop me a comment or tweet, I would love to connect with you. (Lol why do I sound like a middle aged man???) But yeah feel free to comment below, tweet or DM me.

P.S. Click here to vote for me as blogger of the month and click here to watch my debut UCAS vlog. Make sure you like, comment and subscribe and if you're going to Bham, enjoy filming and editing and want to do a little collab feel free to contact me  .

Keep Smiling


Twitter: @iTunu_Speaks 

Monday, 15 August 2016

UCAS Vlog: Sixth form tears and Uni fears

UCAS provided me with the amazing opportunity to do some vlogs for them and I said yes. I SAID YES!!! My first video is all about my Year 13 experience and how I’m feeling about University. It was a lot of fun making this vlog, I hope you like it. Make sure you share and give it a cheeky like and let me know what you think and if you would like me to make more vlogs. Check it out here.

Make sure you vote for me as blogger of the month here (and ask other people to vote, the more the merrier) 

Keep Smiling :) 


Tuesday, 2 August 2016

New Beginnings

Hola mis bonitos. I haven't been on here for the longest time but I am BAAACCCKKKK. It has been nearly two months since my exams ended and I can't even express how free I feel. Year 13 was a challenge that no one warned me about or prepared me for but with some encouragement and a lot of praying and perseverance I got there in the end. So now it's on to the next thing -UNIVERSITY!!!

I am really excited about University. Now that may seem like a very obvious statement but alas young ones tis not true. I wasn't excited about University at all before, not even a little bit. It got to exam time and the glitz and glamour of Uni just disappeared. All I could think of was being alone in my room eating baked beans from a tin, listening to Jhene Aiko and it made me really sad (if you haven't realised already I am very dramatic). But this holiday has really helped resurrect the happy ray of sunshine I once was. 

I have been watching tons of YouTube videos about Uni recently from girls that I can relate to (Adessy, ImaniShola, Courtney Daniella, Mikai McDermott) and they have really helped put me at ease. 

I went Uni clothes shopping with the madre a few weeks ago which was surprisingly fun. (I'm not a fan of shopping; those pictures of boyfriends sitting down looking tired in malls are me). I also started a 'My Values at University' list. It's something that an older friend suggested that I do and I have heard many people say 'make sure you stick to your values when you go to Uni' so I saw that as a sign and started writing one. Basically, a 'My values at University' list is a compilation of three things: The person you want to be, what you will do and what you won't do. 

For example I don't drink, I never have done and don't plan to, so that will be on my 'what I won't do' section.  Since I stayed at the same school for seven years, I really want and need to push myself out of my comfort zone (this phrase is so old, I feel like it should be 'propel myself into the pits of discomfort' or something of that nature) so that will be in the 'what I will do' section. You get the gist. 

There are so many stories of people turning into monsters or lost sheep at Uni and I don't want that to be me and I also want to get a degree at the end of it all. So, I have my little list as a reminder of who I am and what I'm about just in case I start getting brave and forget. 

I finally signed up for accommodation a week or so ago after putting it off for a really long time (remember the fear of eating baked beans out of a tin all alone listening to Jhene Aiko. Well, picking the accommodation where that could potentially happen was all types of triggering).  So, everything is feeling a bit more real now and after such a long time I am coming to accept that this is the start of something new and I am so ready. 

I like to be honest about my thoughts and feelings, so although I was ready to leave sixth form, I wasn't looking forward to University so I started doubting my decisions. Knowing a few people who are at Uni means I didn't (and still don't) have a romanticised view of it. The prospect of being surrounded by tons of new people, doing a course that I have never learnt about (Politics and International Relations) made me excited but also really anxious. 

I used to be very comfortable in new environments but I've realised that over the past few years I have become a bit more reserved. So, if you are anything like me and fluctuate between being the life of the party and the silent person in the corner, you may be able to relate with the mixed feelings about Uni. But now I'm focusing on just thinking positively about it and also reminding myself that it will be a huge learning experience. So, all that's left now is RESULTS DAY.

Results day is approaching and I am a mixture of scared, desperate to know where I'm going to Uni and pushing the prospect of the day back to the furthest place in my mind so I can focus on enjoying my summer. 

It's actually been such a journey. I feel like emotionally and mentally Year 13 really tested me and looking back on the few posts I managed to squeeze out I was just teary all the time. But we got through this boos!!! I am so proud of myself and everyone else and I'm excited for a new challenge and experience. Well done to all the IB people who got their results a few weeks ago as well.

P.S. I am planning to write a few more posts: 

1)  Advice for first year: So if you just finished first year or are at Uni now (whatever year you may be), feel free to drop nuggets of wisdom in the comment section below or tweet @iTunu_Speaks

2) I want to write some advice for those of you going to Year 11-13, about exams, choosing subjects, choosing a University and course, writing your personal statement etc. So if you have any questions, write them in the comment section below or tweet @iTunu_Speaks

Vote for me as UCAS blogger of the month here, comment below if you have any questions and remember to SHARE SHARE SHARE. 

Keep Smiling!

Friday, 6 May 2016

6th form ft. a million tears (and some sunshine)

Sixth form is nearly coming to an end, exams are about to start and how do I feel? Exhausted. I hit the biggest brick wall I ever have done a few weeks ago and found myself saying 'I can't do it' and really meaning it. What is 'it'? I hear you scream. Well 'it' is;  revision, going to lessons, understanding content, going to school, making it through the day. I was so fed up and had given up on myself. I went to lessons wishing them to be over once I sat in my seat. I found it hard to read big chunks of text and comprehend what was going on (English, History and Psychology= endless words; long words, key words and words that I'm sure were made up just to annoy me- stichomythia anyone?). I had to do a quick breathe in and count to 10 before I entered the school building repeating to myself 'today will be a happy day'. I was so done. 

I don't usually get fed up of school for more than a couple of days, I love school but recently the sound of my alarm in the morning fills me with dread (and I have a pretty happy sounding alarm!). I have cried so much over the past few weeks and had an overwhelming sense of emptiness. You know the kind of emptiness you feel when you are doing everything you're supposed to but feel like it will count for nothing. Or the emptiness you feel when ,despite wanting to revise, you don't do anything because you don't have any motivation. 

When I got sick and tired of feeling so rubbish I finally confessed my biggest fear about exams and leaving school to a friend saying (all my words punctuated by sniffles and tears) 'I think I've set my standards too high and I really don't know if I can do this'. She gave me some words of encouragement and said that I should be happy that I'm crying because it shows that I still care. And in a really strange way, that was true. I really do care. I care a lot. Not just about myself, about everyone. We've all worked so hard to get through basically 11 years of education, we got through GCSEs, AS levels (or first year of IB) and this is the final hurdle, the final jump and it's about mustering up the courage to just go for it. 

In my incredibly brief time doing athletics (I got bitten by Olympic fever in 2012) I tried hurdles. There was one hurdle (just one!) and the coach wanted us to try and jump over it. It was the scariest thing because even before ATTEMPTING to jump over I created a whole narrative that made jumping (or is it 'hurdling'???) even scarier. I am going to fall, I'm going to trip up and embarrass myself, I am going to bash into this thing and it's going to break. This is going to be a disaster. But I did jump, the hurdle fell (but I didn't), no one laughed and I just had to try again.

I think so many of us are approaching sixth form the way I approached hurdles before finally taking a leap of faith. We see the obstacle i.e. exams and before even trying to jump over we've created 10 million reasons why we're definitely going to fail. We are telling ourselves that we've; set our standards too high, don't have enough time, aren't smart enough and that all our efforts, big and small, are not going to count for anything. I have definitely felt and said all of these things over the past few days, let alone the past few months and although it's scary  I am determined to get through this.

I will not lie and say that I feel extremely confident about my exams (and I guess I was waiting to feel like that before I wrote anything) but I'm trying to take everyday as it comes and pace myself. If you're anything like me, you take a very 'go hard or go home' approach to revision and school and then you run full pelt into a brick wall and it's more like 'went hard and was sent home with a concussion'. But now I'm in recovery and determined to keep working hard until I kiss exams and A-Levels goodbye. 

I was given a little pep talk by a teacher (after finally asking for help and telling someone I was struggling to find a balance between revision, lessons, preparing for retakes and keeping myself sane) and she said that no matter what happens you want to open your results knowing that you tried your absolute best. That's what I'm holding on to now. I'm trying to convince myself that I can do this and I will succeed and I'm also trying to keep calm and I urge you to do the same.

I know there is pressure from so many angles when preparing for exams but sometimes you have to remember that you are doing these exams for yourself and no one else. You are working hard for yourself. Those grades or numbers you get at the end are going to be yours and you want to know that whatever happens you tried your best. 

So let's keep at it, keep working hard and BOSS these exams!!!

Good luck everyone and to all my beautiful IB people who have started their exams already all the best in everything. 


P.S. Vote for me as UCAS blogger of the month here, comment below if you have any questions and if this helped you SHARE SHARE SHARE. 

Keep Smiling!

Itunu x 

Monday, 21 March 2016


It's happened again, I haven't blogged for such a long time *cries*. Before I start blogging normally again (aiming for once a week) here is an update of my school/educational life since the 25th of January.

Open Days
I probably defied every single rule by applying to 4 Universities that I hadn't visited but I did it (because I'm rebellious like that). I finally went to the visit day for the University of York and the University of Birmingham and I loved them.

University of York
York is a very green University and I am basically like a little dog, I love the outdoors and fresh air, I don't like being inside for long, so seeing all the green space made me really happy. British weather decided to spew its tears on the visit day though, so it was cold and raining and generally really gross but I just imagined what it would be like on a rare sunny day and thought YEAH I LIKE THIS PLACE. We also had the best mini lecture and breakout session talking about Jeremy Corbyn, Donald Trump, terrorism and the refugee crisis (which caused a bit of a debate). I finished the open day feeling amazing. It was that feeling you get when you question yourself about going to a party or event and when you finally get there you're really happy with your decision. I had been questioning myself about my course, especially because I don't have any strong allegiance to any political party and think of politics from a very emotional stance, rather than in figures and stats. When I got to the open day, however, and heard other people speaking passionately about why the UK should accept refugees my anxieties were lifted.

University of Birmingham
After the visit day to York I was so ready to go to Birmingham. I got to the campus and was gushing about it for the whole time. The University of Birmingham looks like the campus Universities you see on American TV shows and it’s so beautiful. The lecturer started the session playing loads of different songs from Green Day to BeyoncĂ© and asked us to find the link. When he finally said that politics influences music, and how music can be used as a political tool I was like YAAAAASSSSSSS (internally of course) because that whole concept really resonates with me. We then went for a tour of the University with a really friendly tour guide called Elle (if you ever read this, you are legit the sweetest person) who broke down the whole University life from the social side to the Politics and International Relations degree. During the lunch break we also got to talk to one of the lecturer. Again Mr Trump came up in conversation and also the EU referendum. Considering that Birmingham was initially just an additional University on the list, I wasn't really expecting to like it but I loved the atmosphere and the course content.

Head Girl
I was one of two Head Girls at my school; we started our role last March and ended it a few weeks ago. Juggling Head Girl responsibilities and school work was not really difficult but served to be challenging in other respects. We had a really great team and managed to do a few things, including raising money for War Child to send girls to school. There were a few times we had to stay late after school and talk to parents and prospective students and we also did speeches, which meant that any feelings of awkwardness or shyness had to be thrown out of the window (one of the biggest things I learnt to do). It was a huge learning experience and I'm really grateful I got the opportunity to represent my school.


Final Offer
My last offer was in December, so I was pretty sure that I was going to get a rejection from Warwick. Last week I got my very last offer from Warwick, which was a big surprise. I feel that bit more motivated to work harder and keep going- so yeah that's pretty fabulous.

Shameless promo
Aside from blogging for UCAS, I blog for other platforms and I'm now a writer for MTV!!!
Click on the links to see my work:

Year 13 has been quite stressful but it’s nearly over and my post from exactly 3 months ago is my motivation, and hopefully it can be yours to. Check it out here.

Keep Smiling 
& click here to vote for me as blogger of the month 
Itunu :) 

Monday, 25 January 2016


I got through mock week guys!!!

After surviving a 2½ hour English exam I feel like I can do just about anything. After surviving mock week I feel like I can do just about anything to be honest. Mock 'week' lasted 3 days for me, with a History and English exam on Monday and a Psychology exam on Wednesday.
I'm soooo glad that all the exams are over because there is a weird pressure that comes with mock exams that doesn't really exist when you have real exams. I don't know if it's the realisation that exams will be happening soon (well soonish) or just the general feeling of being unprepared but everyone gets incredibly stressed and it's generally quite a gross atmosphere. But they're over now and we managed to trudge through them with a few funny videos and packets of biscuits-yay!

I feel like I should spurt out some advice today but I'm not really too sure about school based advice. I think my main realisation since the year has started is 'DON'T FORGET TO ENJOY YOURSELF'. Like I said in my post at the start of the school year make the most of every moment.  I have been trying to exist in the moment, focus on the present, enjoy spending time with   people (friends and those I haven't really spoken to before) and just LOVE my last year at school.

I tend to isolate myself from people during school/exam period and although in some respects it helps me focus, it gets really lonely sometimes so I am trying to work around that, so I work hard and still spend time with others (any advice from those who have gone through A-Levels would be appreciated- comment below and I will share it in my next post)

Well, this was just a catch up on my super interesting school life; hope you all have a wonderful week.
Keep Smiling!
Itunu x
P.S Vote for me as Blogger of the Month!!! (Click here)

Sunday, 10 January 2016

My First Week Back

Happy New Year Amigos!!!

The Christmas Break was the most necessary and wonderful break EVER. I managed to relax and get work done; had a lie in pretty much every day and ate loads of food and I honestly think that THIS is the key to greatness and maximum productivity. (Food, Relaxation and BEAUTIFUL SLEEP)


So being back at school has thrown me off balance a bit because I have to wake up early in the morning and the times during the holiday where I would have been stuffing my face with food, I'm now learning about Abolitionism, Sonnets and watching Zimbardo talk about Aggression. (I don't actually know how I survived this week now I look back at it)


Surprisingly, however, it was a really lovely first week back. Although the thought of mock exams, which are starting on the 18th, has been looming- I have tried (key word-tried) to revise. I am finding it a bit difficult to do the whole 'being in school and also revising’ thing but I'm attempting to keep calm and be more productive . 


One thing I learnt this week (and it wasn't on the curriculum) is that happiness is a choice. Instead of being miserable because the holiday was over, I was resolute that I was going to start the term being positive. I was going to be in the moment, actually LISTEN in my lessons and enjoy my break and lunchtimes and not spend all my time panicking about school OR wishing I was at home watching Elf.


Following through with this made me feel so much happier, the week went quickly and relatively smoothly and I could actually tell you what I learnt this week in quite a bit of detail (yay me!).


So bring on WEEK TWO!!!


I hope you all had a lovely first week back and I hope that if you didn't (even if you did in fact) that you have a wonderful rest of the term. Block the negativity, Keep Positive and Eat Chocolate (and maybe an Apple or something).


Keep Smiling!