Hello, and a warm welcome to the RVC!

I’m Becca, the 2016/17 SU President. This page has been put together by this years Students’ Union team to ensure you have all the information you need for Freshers and general university living.

The Student’s Union (RVCSU) at the RVC is a separate organisation at the university, run by students, for students. Our aim is to assist you with all aspects of university life, so that you have the best university experience possible. We act as a voice for students at the RVC, no matter the course, and work with the university to make and make life as good as possible for all students, academically or not.

This page will provide you with a brief overview of all things RVC, but as always, any questions, please feel free to email any one of us!  If we can’t help, we will definitely point you in the direction of someone who can. This is your university life, your degree, and your RVC; and the SU are here to make this experience great.


Becca Bowes - SU President (supresident@rvc.ac.uk)

What do you wish someone told you when you first started?

Don’t be afraid to get involved. RVC provides so many different opportunities for students both within your course, and the university as a whole, and although it seems daunting at first, getting stuck in and meeting new people is all part of the fun!

You can become a Student Ambassador and travel the country representing RVC, you can join a sport or society and mingle with other students in other years and on different courses, or you can join the SU – they offer officer positions, bar work, vice-presidencies and a presidency! I wouldn’t be where I was now without getting stuck in to different opportunities and challenges, so my best bit of advice to you all, is to jump in at the deep end – I’ll see you there!

Carla Bleasdale - Vice President Activities and Campaigns (suactivities@rvc.ac.uk)

What is the best piece of advice you would give to freshers?

I set up separate bank accounts for my student loan and living allowance and then I transfer a weekly budget budget across. Otherwise, I may have been that idiot buying 20 jagerbombs in Zoo Bar. This way, even if I do make some poor life choices on a Wednesday evening, at least I only have to live off Sainsbury's basics for the rest of that week!

Hatti Smart - Vice President Welfare (suwelfare@rvc.ac.uk)

How did you cope with missing home?

I made sure that I took lots of photographs with me to decorate my room and made regular Skype calls home. My family also sent me with a freezer box full of home cooked meals so that I didn’t burn the halls of residence to the ground and could enjoy some home comforts!


Sherri-Anne Pegg - Vice President Treasurer (sutreasurer@rvc.ac.uk)

Top finance tip?

Start a ‘save the change’ plan. Everything spend in a shop, round it up to the nearest pound and put that into a savings account. It wont make much difference at the time but at the end of the year most people have a couple of hundred pounds saved up which helps when student loans run out! Some banks have a scheme you can sign up to do this automatically, but it is easy enough to do with mobile banking if this isn’t available.


Jess Timmins - VP Representation and Communications (surepcomms@rvc.ac.uk)

Tips for revision and exams?

Dont be afraid to let your hair down once in a while and don’t spend every evening over your books. You will quickly run out of steam and your life will get quite miserable. Don’t forget, you wouldn’t be here if you weren’t capable of passing the exams, you don’t need to be a slave to work!



Click here for the SU alcohol policy

The social side to university can often be associated with the misconception of needing to drink alcohol to have a good time. The Students' Union will be putting on an array of non-alcohol related events for everyone to enjoy throughout the year. If you are consuming alcohol, it is important to know your limits. Drinking alcohol in moderation can be a harmless aspect of student life, but drinking too much can seriously compromise your physical and mental wellbeing, as well as impact your studies. By no means should there ever be a need, or pressure to drink in order to enjoy yourself.

If anyone would like more information on this or feels as though they would like some help then there are some useful links below:

RVC Health and Wellbeing 







How do we represent you?

Student Representation is a BIG thing at RVC. We work hard so that everyone’s voice is heard and like to act proactively to ensure your student experience is one of the best around!
Working alongside our RVCSU Officers we have RVCSU Course Reps. These guys act as the bridge between students and the college by informing staff about current issues affecting the year and in response, and then ensuring any actions made by the college are fed back to the student body. They are also frequently asked for their opinions on decisions to be made by the college that will affect lots of students.

Who are RVCSU Course Reps?

Any student can put themselves forward to be an RVCSU Course Rep. They are elected by their peers after they have nominated themselves for the position. There are up to 2 RVCSU Course Reps in every year of every course (smaller courses may be amalgamated). They tend to be people who like pizza (we provide lots) and making new friends throughout the university!

What do they do?

RVCSU Course Reps canvas student opinion and collect feedback from their year group (usually informally, such as through Facebook polls or via email) which they discuss with course staff. They may also be chosen to attend various college committees, such as those that discuss student welfare or college facilities. Their input is invaluable at these meetings where the student opinion is highly valued by staff. They also communicate with their year group to report back on what the college is doing about any problems. They are managed by the Vice President for Representation and Communication to provide support and to ensure the Students’ Union Committee is fully informed and up to date with the issues that matter to you.

How can I become an RVCSU Course Rep?

We encourage anyone to apply who is passionate about student representation and enjoys making a positive impact on student experience. For the coming academic year Course Rep nominations will close on Thursday 13th October, if you are interested in applying please email surepcomms@rvc.ac.uk and we will send you more information. All reps should be available for an induction on the evening of Tuesday 25th October and a leadership training day on Saturday 12th November. This is a great opportunity to throw yourself into life as an RVC student, and with financial remuneration for attending meetings and plenty of support and pizza provided…why wouldn’t you!



Clubs and societies are a very important part of student life at university. RVC runs over 30 clubs and societies. For new students, joining a club or society is an excellent way to help you settle in and meet people of similar interests. These student run groups enable you to make new friends and spend time doing something you have never tried before or following an interest that is already an important part of your life. As well as taking part, any student can get involved in setting up and running their own club or society and RVC will provide all the support you need to.

Clubs and Societies




The Students' Union welfare team is made up of your elected Vice-president for Welfare (Hatti) and a few other students volunteers. Together with the help of the Camden officer, the goal of the welfare group is to engage with the study body, improve student welfare and to put on welfare related activities and events throughout the year. Some of the plans for 2016 include:

  •  Wellbeing week: consisting of talks from vets and external people
  •  Free fruit to promote health living
  •  Wind-down Wednesday drop in sessions at both campuses
  •  "Don’t Panic" picnics around exam times
  •  Continued Yoga and Massages provided free of charge
  •  Free condoms and chlamydia tests available confidentially on request
  •  Stress buster days: think bouncy castles, inflatable hammers and much more…

To find out more...

If you would like any more information or have any questions please pop an email to Hatti at suwelfare@rvc.ac.uk.



A warm welcome to your RVC postgraduate course!

There are two SU Postgraduate Officers, Amy Barstow and Rán Magnúsdóttir. Both of us are second year PhD students. Amy is a graduate from the RVC bachelor of veterinary medicine (BVetMed) course and returned to RVC after a year working in an equine hospital. She is a full time PhD student based primarily at the Hawkshead Campus in the Structure and Motion Laboratory and somehow manages to keep up a bit of clinical work too!

Rán completed her undergraduate studies in pshycology in Iceland before undertaking a masters in Neuroscience at the Wolfson institute at University College London. She is now a full time PhD student in Comparative Biomedical Sciences and is based at both Camden and Hawkshead doing basic and translational science.

We represent all PhD candidates, postgraduate masters courses, clinical training scholars and graduate diploma students. At RVC postgraduates are a very wide-ranging group of students in terms of research topics as well as age and life stage. This makes for a friendly and supportive environment so do not worry about ‘fitting in’ as there is space for everyone.

We are committed to creating a positive and friendly atmosphere within the College for all postgraduate students. We aim to do this by arranging educational and social events and doing everything in our power to respond to the changing needs of the RVC’s postgraduate student body. That said we would love for you to get involved too. If you have any ideas for social events or suggestions for educational speakers or anything else at all we can help you put these events together.

We hope you are all excited about your next career move and we cannot wait to meet you all during your induction sessions. The most important thing to remember as a full time postgraduate student, especially if you have been working recently, is that you are a student again. This means you are council tax exempt and can reap the benefits of student discounts again. It’s well worth looking into the student offers that are available as they can really help you save the pennies whilst taking advantage of London and Hertfordshire life! We’ll also provide you with a welcome pack on your arrival to help you adjust to student life again.

If you have any questions please do get in touch.

Best wishes,

Amy and Rán supostgrad@rvc.ac.uk



So, you're an international student?

London can be a daunting place when you first arrive. One of the biggest issues that you may have is knowing what stores to go for everyday essentials that you don’t bring with you.

Local stores located on Camden High St:

  • Boots, Superdrug (deodorant and toiletry needs)
  • Argos (electrical item and general order and collect store)
  • Sainsburys (food and general supplies)
  • Waitrose, M&S, Lidl (food)
  • Camden Market (take away and comfort food)

For all of your other supply and clothing needs, Oxford Street, the major shopping district, is a short Tube ride away!

Any other questions, just ask the international rep, Erin Koperna.

Email her at suinterntionalrep@rvc.ac.uk

Check out these events during your first week in London!

  • Sept. 13 (Tues.): Pizza and a Movie – 5pm
  • Sept. 14 (Wed): Welcome to Camden Tour – 5pm
  • Sept. 15 (Thurs): Restaurant or Pub – 5pm
  • Sept. 16 (Friday): Constitution – 5pm
  • Sept 17 (Sat): Hop on Hop off the Tube – 9:30am
  • Sept 18 (Sun): Picnic at Regents Park – 1pm
It’s hard being away from home for so long, even the UK students feel it. So if you crave that feeling from home and want a taste and experience of something familiar, here are some of the best places in town:
  • China Town, Brixton Market, Portobello Road, and Camden Market



By Day

  • Camden is a fantastic quirky area to explore. Perhaps the single biggest attraction is the iconic Camden Market which has a vast array of shops for alternative clothing and off-the-wall knickknacks. Take in the aroma of hippy incense and haggle with the pushy stall owners for things that you don’t really want to buy. You can pick up some amazing bargains here and it has an amazing food court area which is good to keep in mind for lunch.
  • If you take a stroll along the canal to Regents Park, you have to take a walk up Primrose Hill for one of the best views of London’s sprawling cityscape (Hampstead Heath is another popular viewpoint, but you may prefer to take the 24 bus there)
  • London Zoo can also be found near Regents Park. You can purchase a Zoological Society of London (ZSL) student fellowship which allows you unlimited entry to ZSL and other benefits for £37.50.
  • There are a large number of museums in London for people interested in a range of things. The best thing is that most of them are free. From the London science museum with 5 floors dedicated to science and technology so there is so much to see, the Natural History Museumoffers a great view to the natural world and the earth and The British Museum is dedicated to human history, art, and culture, located in the Bloomsbury area.
  • Better Gym runs different activities including swimming, fitness classes and gym workouts at 5 locations in Camden. They offer a wide range of memberships with options to suit every budget. A popular option with students is the "pay and play membership" where you pay a small upfront fee, around £5, then save up to 30% on non-member prices.
  • The best way to see London though is to just take a friend get on the tube and explore, a great way to this would be to hire “boris bikes”

By Night:

Camden Town is very popular with tourists and there are some places that try to exploit that so we’ve put a list together to help you out!

If you want to head out for an evening of chilling out with your mates:

Grand Union is situated perfectly at the end of Royal College Street.  By day it is a relaxed diner- where RVC students get 50% off food with your RVC and a buzzing, effortlessly trendy cocktail bar by night. Enjoy any 2 of the same cocktail for £10 from 12pm-8pm every day and all day Sunday, Wednesday is quiz night from 7pm. Happy Days!

Bar 55: This amazing cocktail bar is definitely worth a visit. Although perhaps not the best place to chat or dance with its loud music and crowded interior, Bar 55 more than makes up for it by offering tons of remarkable cocktails; from savory to sweet, sour or very alcoholic, they have everything you can think of! What's more, Happy Hour (6-8pm) offers 2-for-1 prices, so if you go with a group of people, there are always more than enough cocktails to try and love (and often get tipsy off of). They also offer very weak or totally non-alcoholic cocktails. Sundays are also popular as it's all day happy hour!

Ice Warf is the local Weatherspoons situated right next to Camden lock which is cheap and cheerful

If you haven't has enough laughs figuring out how to cook in halls, Camden Comedy club will provide a giggle! It is held upstairs at The Camden Head, 100 Camden High Street, and programs top class comedy nights 7 days a week.

Sometimes it’s time to dance the night away! Here are our suggestions on where to go.

You can't go wrong with Koko on a Friday night, student entry is £4, in a great location next to Mornington Crescent Station. As a former theatre, the interior is old style glamour with a large dance floor, roof terrace and live music followed by DJ sets.

Proud is a club fashioned from the former horse hospital in the Stables Market with live music. Student night is Every Thursday.

If you are looking for somewhere to go on a Saturday Night, Propaganda at the legendary Electric Ballroom in Camden is a popular choice, with drinks from £2.50 you can’t got wrong for a Saturday. It offers mixes from the likes of Arctic Monkeys, Daft Punk, Catfish and the Bottlemen, Mumford & Sons, Foals, Bastille, Blink-182 and more! Usually they have a guest list on their Facebook page which gets you £8 entry

HEAVEN is one of Londons most famous night clubs near Charring Cross station, It is home to G.A.Y on Thursday and Friday nights which offers pop classics and cheap cocktail pitchers!

Leicester Square is only a short tube ride away and is home to many clubs including the infamous Zoo Bar.. .Wednesday nights are for various sports and societies. If you join a team or a group within the RVC, your team/society social secretary will kindly organize events a social on Wednesdays. This may vary from place to place and does not necessarily mean alcohol! Afterwards, even if you are not in a team or a society, all RVC students get free entry to a club called Zoo Bar in Leicester Square (remember to bring your student ID). It is perhaps not the most posh or elegant club in Leicester Square, but with decent music and a huge RVC crowd on the dance-floor, it's definitely worth a visit.

With thousands of bars and clubs throughout London, it's impossible to track down and say "this is the best place." At the end of the day, it's more of who you are with, than where you go.

If you don’t feel like dancing, it’s not all about the bars and clubs; there are always those times when you want to do something different and Bingo isn't just for Grandmas!

If you are fed up of the bar scene, but aren't prepared to spend you Friday night in your pyjamas, Bingo is your answer! It's ridiculously affordable, fills you with nervous anticipation and you may even come home with some winnings! There is a Mecca Bingo 2 minutes walk from Camden Town station, 180 Arlington Rd.

Chill out, unwind and get set to lose yourself in the film at Camden Odeon, 14 Parkway. Students can enjoy discount tickets £6 - all day, everyday!



Firstly we would recommend you download the Transport For London, TFL, or citymapper app if you have a smart phone. Alternatively if you are willing to spend a few minutes over Google Map it would be great to familiarise yourself with the area. But really there is nowhere you can't get to in London and transportation should never be a problem as buses and tube lines run extensively throughout the city.

There are a lot of different ways in which you can pay for your journey on the London transport. Both financially and for ease of use, Oyster Cards are strongly recommended, They can allow you to get money off all types of transport within London.

If you have a Student rail card you can also link this to give you further savings. You can buy an oyster card you from any tube station, if you want to link your rail card you need to go to a manned ticket office,the closest being Camden Road Overground. If you prefer a human to serve you there are also many Oyster Ticket Stops all over London in neighbourhood stores, newsagents etc that display a sign in their window. Oyster Card also caps the maximum amount you spend for transportation per day, so the most you will ever have to pay for travel within London Zones 1-2 is £6.20 (when linked with a student railcard). However if you forget to top up your oyster you can always use your contactless debit card!

Tube rides are not overly cheap (£2.10 --£2.80 per journey for Zones 1-2), and last train runs too early for most student social scenes, sometime between 11:30pm and midnight. However, during the day, the tube is a quick and efficient method of travel. But do note that if you plan on taking the tube for a destination 1 station away, it may be faster (and cheaper) to walk! For many of you returning from your late evening strolls and endeavours, buses will be your best friend! They are relatively cheap (£1.40 if you have an Oyster card), and most importantly, they run throughout the night. So if you are out in Leicester Square and are wishing to head back to College for the morning lectures, remember bus numbers N29, N20, and 24. You can board all trains (both over-ground and underground), buses and trams anywhere within District of London.

Finally, taking a cab is an option, if you have a large group of people travelling together, it might actually work out to be cheaper than public transport! If all else fails, you can decide to walk - with the right company, walking in London can be a surprising pleasure. There are also a number of bizarre and interesting sights you can check out.





Remember, London is often a heavily populated area. Criminals target crowds so be aware of your belongings at all times. Try and avoid using your mobile phone in view of others.

  • Particularly when drinking, make sure you eat well beforehand, familiarise yourself with the area, and keep an eye on your belongings.
  • If going home late at night try to do so in trusted company. Travelling alone is never a good idea.
  • Know how to get home? Plan ahead, particularly if you’re going to a part of town you are unfamiliar with.
  • Let someone know where you’re going and what time you expect to be back.
  • Ensure your mobile phone is charged and has credit. Keep the money or oyster card you need to get home separate, so that you don’t spend it or lose it.
  • London buses no longer accept cash, so remember your oyster or contactless card.
  • Only use licensed cabs, preferably those booked in advance.

Useful links:

National Union of Students 

Victim Support 

Transport for London, Journey planner 

Taxis and Minicabs 



You may be a student of RVC but don’t forget you’re part of a wider network of London colleges, too. If you can’t find a society you like, investigate elsewhere - Student Central in Bloomsbury, near Euston, plays host to a whole range of societies and events including film nights and canoe polo, lifesaving, LGBT and jazz clubs.

Should you want to, you can also attend classes at all University of London colleges - this includes the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), the London School of Economics (LSE) and University College London (UCL), among others. They all have brilliant public lecture programmes, too, so it’s worth checking those out if you’re interested in wider debate.

Their libraries can also be used by other UoL students at off-peak times of year. As a part of University of London, students can use the Student Central Bar. Although its alcohol price isn't as cheap as the Haxby (what can I say? Haxby is always the best), it offers cheap drinks, a dance floor, and a great crowd of different university students. So if you wish to meet non-vet students, Student Central is a great shout!

Their Freshers Fair is on the 30th September from 12 noon - 5pm.



Student Contacts:

RVCSU Course reps can be contacted with any course related problems. Once elected their details will be on RVC learn. 

Staff Contacts:

Advice Centre Contacts: