Brooke Huxter

History - BA (Hons)

We got to do some research in the Canterbury Cathedral Archives, which is unique.

What attracted you to Kent?

I liked the wide module range and the level of choice that you have. At Kent there is only one compulsory module and after that, I could study African history, American history, anything I wanted. Also, it’s not until you come here for an Open Day that you realise quite how beautiful the University is.

How was your first year at Kent?

The introductory module was called Making History and it gave me the background knowledge of historiography and taught me how to write a university essay, which was very helpful. After that, I chose to study the global history of empires which I'd never looked at before. It was very interesting and my lecturer was amazing – really enthusiastic and helpful.

The lecturers do bring the subject to life. When I studied Jack the Ripper in a module on Victorian Britain, we actually went to a surgical room in London to see how the Victorians would have investigated the murders. And we also have a cartoon archive in the library so, in the same module, we looked at some original political cartoons of Churchill – it’s a real piece of history that you’re holding in your hands.

What about study support?

I’ve always felt well supported. You’re given an academic advisor at the start and you can see that person whenever you want to. If you have any personal difficulties, the School’s wellbeing team are also very helpful.

How did your studies progress?

My second year, I felt more at home –?there’s a jump in the workload but it's not anything you can't handle. I took a deeper look at American history including Buffalo Bill and the Wild West. I also did Marvels, Monsters and Freaks, which included topics such as ‘freak shows’ and circus acts – all very interesting.

How would you describe your fellow students?

Before I arrived, I was a bit nervous but everyone's very welcoming. We have good seminar debates and I like hearing other people’s ideas. Because the campus is so diverse, with lots of international students, you have the chance to talk to other people and learn about their cultures, which is fascinating.

How do you spend your spare time at Kent?

The social atmosphere on campus is great. The bars and restaurants and sports facilities are good and I go to our campus nightclub quite a bit and that's really fun. I'm also in the History Society and we go away for a trip every year: I’m off to Prague this January. I also do cheerleading – we support the sports teams, which is good fun! And I get involved in varsity week where we have a friendly competition with Canterbury Christ Church, our neighbouring university.

What about the location of Canterbury?

I love being in such an historic city. I did one module called the Art of Death and we got to do some research in the Canterbury Cathedral Archives, which is unique. Canterbury is also well known for the Canterbury Tales – when I was studying Chaucer we did a tour of the medieval streets.

How would you describe the facilities on campus?

They’re very good. The library has access to the history archives and special collections and the study hubs are useful too – both have plenty of computers and printing facilities.?The accommodation is really nice. I lived in Park Wood and having Woody’s is good – you can go in there to socialise and there’s a shop on your doorstep. Kent also has a gym that’s not expensive and the Gulbenkian has a student cinema and theatre.

What are you hoping to do after graduation?

I’ve decided that I want to pursue a Master’s at Kent; the course here is outstanding and I like the lecturers in the School. Eventually I’d like to go on to do a PhD and become a university lecturer myself.

What advice would you give to other students?

Join societies and try new things: it’s good to get some new experiences!