The new arrivals are here, and they’re already better off than we were. Unknowingly, by agreeing to attend the University of York, we also signed up to holidays filled with blank expressions and ignorance when chatting about our educational institution of choice. They’ve been spared the indignity of being talked down to from students at far more famous locations, with venues for a night out that aren’t a subtle joke. Realistically, that seems unlikely to change imminently. However, it’s definitely nice that some degree of progress has been made. York, often very much forgotten by the world at large has been on the receiving end of some rather positive attention for once. It surely beats getting no attention at all.
Cancer, an enduring concern for everyone in the country, lies fallen at the feet of the brightest biology boffins York can provide. Well, not quite, but we’ve apparently made a start. While not vanquished, progress towards annihilating one of mankind’s most persistent enemies is being appreciated in national newspaper column inches at the moment, and is the kind of thing that boosts positive public perception of an institution. It is a good justification for the increased investment that the university has received from figures such as Bill Gates, and goes to prove that as an institution we’re not slacking off.
And apparently, we’re all 3% more content to be here than last time anyone bothered to check. Now, isn’t that nice? If you close your eyes and concentrate hard, you can actually feel that 3% difference. Doesn’t it feel good? We’re at the 22nd most satisfying university in the country and, according to The Times, the 70th best for quality in the world, 8th in the nation. It certainly makes a welcome change from news reports earlier in the year that saw York slip places in ranking tables, a difference from what was presumed to be the start of a long decline for the place.
At some point you can only hope that people finally take notice of York for all the quality it offers. These red letter days for newsworthy events go to prove that regardless of frequent criticism, this is not the worst university around by a long way. We can take pride in the fact that we’re getting a little bit better every day.
The feel good factor isn’t wholly complete, sure. Those suits in the Heslington Hall ivory tower want to close your bars and put you in half finished accommodation. But some happiness for once makes a nice start to the year. It hopefully inspires us all to try and do a little bit better than we did last year, and enjoy the whole thing more. We would do well to dwell on the positives instead of the negatives.