Heidi Nagaitis

History Major, Graduated 2014

It's always difficult to fully comprehend academic study before you arrive at university. I had always enjoyed History in school and college, it was a subject I was interested in and was good at, but starting university I wasn't sure I had a true passion for the subject. Lancaster introduced me to hundreds of years of history in their first year course, giving students an unparalleled breadth of understanding. I had always studied modern history, but the taste of the medieval that I got through HIST100 meant that by second year I felt confident when choosing a wide variety of modules from different time periods.

The variety of modules meant that second year study was never boring. From Soviet and Fascist architecture, the aftermath of the Vietnam War and the Spanish conquistadores, I studied a plethora of periods and places from around the globe. This continued into my third year whilst I began writing my dissertation, under the watchful eye of Dr Peniston-Bird, on the Memorialisation of War and the Sanctity of Space, which with her help, became more of an investigative adventure than a 10,000 word piece!

Every lecturer I had for my courses exuded an unbounded passion for their subject which was pretty contagious. A large amount of any history student's time is spent in the library, it comes with the territory, but I was forever finding books, articles, poster art and primary sources in my reading lists which meant my reading took on a variety of forms and was always interesting. Every lecturer I studied under was approachable and available whenever I needed support or help. Many also had a fantastic sense of humour and showed real warmth towards students.

While at university I took part in many extra-curricular activities including playing netball and writing for the student newspaper. I eventually became Fashion editor, managing content, writing articles, styling and organising photo shoots as well as managing the social media content. Getting involved as well as enjoying my studies helped me develop more rounded skills, something which Lancaster heavily supports. These skills are vital in securing graduate employment and helped me to gain work straight after university. Working in a marketing agency in Central Manchester, I really value every skill I honed during my time at university.