New Member
I am facing a huge dilema, which is made worse by the fact that time is running out quickly. Any advice would be appreciated..
I put Leeds as my insurance although i wanted so badly to go there, the city and the university is so appealing to me, as a born and bread londoner. So anyways i made the AAB grades and have been told that my offer has been defered to 2005entry.
I've got another offer to Keele medical school, and i dont know if im worrying about nothing but i feel as though im going to be so miserable, lonely and grumpy there, in such a quiet and enclosed environment. But then again, i know not much about what it is like to live there. I'm from london so im a sucker for all that is urban.

I dont really want to take a year out and have nothing planned, but im really not sure about keele, after working so hard to get into leeds. Im a little worried that after a year im not going to be able to study so effeciently, or that because medicine is such a long course that perhaps setting my self back a year may be putting my self at a serious disadvantage. Again perhaps im wrong and worrying to much. However the decision must be made soon, before both offers are withdrawn.

Any advice or thoughts from people who took a gap year, people who can educate me about what it is like to live in staffordhire for 5 years or people also in my postion, would be greatly appreciated.
Thankyou so much!!


New Member
I obviously couldn't say whether you would be happy or not at Keele, but I would say that Keele is a really friendly place, where I am sure you will make lots of friends - in fact it is probably much easier to get to know people at Keele due to the large number of people living in Halls and on the campus (where you will be based in your preclinical years). It is very easy to get to know other students on campus as all the facilities (pubs, societies, halls, etc) are just for students, rather than being mixed in with the general city like you are in Leeds. In your clinical years (years 3-5) you will be based at North Staffordshire Hospital which is between Stoke and Newcastle, and many students live in the area around the hospital rather than on campus for this time, so if it is the idea of a campus university that is putting you off, you will only actually be based on-campus for 2 years anyway.

Stoke on Trent and Newcastle under Lyme together are probably no smaller than Leeds is as a city, obviously Stoke/Newcastle are smaller than London, but then so is Leeds. There are plenty of entertainment facilities on offer in Stoke and Newcastle (cinemas, theatres, nightclubs, etc) as well as lots to do on the Keele university campus, including lots of active societies, pubs/students union and other things. In terms of its teaching, Keele has an excellent reputation, especially for very small teaching groups and friendly, enthusiastic staff, and currently the curriculum is the same as Manchester curriculum, which is widely recognised as being a very good course.


New Member
Where do I go?

I was in a smilar position to you for 2003 entry and was called for interview at Manchester med and was so set on going to manchester. I was given an offer (from manchester) about 2 days after my interview and then about a week later found out I was going to Keele. Yeah, originally I was like "whats this about" (I put E on sec 3f). I can now tell you I think it was the best thing that could have happened to me. Seriously, Keele medical school is really excellent. I am very aware that people think that Keele is in the middle of no where and there is nothing to do but thats a load of bollocks. Originally, when keele had its first medical students coming over from manchester to do years 3 onwards they were very anxious about the transfer and I think this is where all the "myths" about Keele surfaced. However, now those very students who are now going onto year 4 are really enjoying it. A lot of them seem to organise medics events and eating out at pizza hut (always in there when we go) and generally having a good time. I did speak to people about their transfer and what they really thought about keele (the 3rd year medics) and they are really quite happy with the set-up. I think there anxieties were valid originally as coming to a place where you are essentially the guinea pig year and not knowing what to expect. Academically, Keele is really excellent, its hospital is also massive and the staff are very helpful and want you to succeed. The IT suite, dissecting room, labs and resource rooms are brand new like the rest of the medical school.

From what I gather people who have come from places like London (a lot of my friends) did think they would have problems with a city quite different to London. I think there is only one person who always “bangs on” how he likes london but most of the other students (Birmingham, Manchester, Cambridge, Nottingham, Leeds, Bristol, Ireland, Wales- the ones I remember) really do like it.

Dont worry about being "miserable, lonely and grumpy", I dont think that can really happen unless you have problems communicating with people. Wake up, you should be happy; you have just got yourself a place into medical school. Everyone really does get on, sometimes it can seem a bit sickly how much. I really cannot think of anybody who has a problem of feeling "not wanted". A lot of people make "main" friends within their PBL group and have a really good connection with them, and then there people like me who get on with my PBL group but my main friends are from other PBL groups. Medics parties are always going on and there is always something the medics are organising or doing.

At the end of the day, its your choice on what you want out of medical school and where you want to go with it. One thing that I dont understand is that if you wanted to go to Leeds so much, why didnt you put it down as your firm???? Leeds has, like many medical schools got its pro and cons which I think you can only calculate. I can only speak for Keele which allows you to have "dual nationality" in terms of keele and manchester resources; a manchester medical school degree; excellent teaching (even though Manchester/keele is PBL, you do get lectures to top them up); brilliant facilities; and a well organised school.

Good luck


New Member
Well Nexus, you have made me feel alot better, because i dont think that taking a year out is gonna be right for me, so i guess i'll see you in september. The medical school looks beautiful, my main concern was whether i could live happily in staffordshire, because not much is known about keele, only that it works in conjuction with manchester. Having come from london, i thought that it might be a bit of a culture shock, cos im not exactly your quiet type, and really wanted to be located in a city with everything on my doorstep. lazy... right!

I was initially set on going to manchester as well, but for some obscure reason changed the "M" to an "E" at the last minute: thought it might better my chances or something. Anyways, thankyou.


New Member

I’m sure you will be fine. There are plenty of buses to get you into the town centre from outside practically every halls of residence. There are also plenty of banks, shops, book stores, pubs e.t.c on campus also.

Also, I found out that from 2005 entry onwards applications to read medicine are to be done separately; you can apply to either Manchester or Keele and still get the Manchester medical degree (none of that 3f section stuff). There will also be 110 medical school places !

Anyway, you should soon get a pack of information through the post informing you of which lab/howie coats to get and timetables and things like that.

Take care