My Degree Results Are In!

Exciting news! I found out I’ll be graduating university with a high First Class degree in computer science. I’m so happy with myself I could scream!

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I’m so proud of myself!

Four very hard, very demanding and very tearful years of university have come to an end and at least I have something incredible to show for it. I may no longer want to pursue this industry but there’s no doubt that, if I ever wanted to find a place back into computing, I’d be welcome with this qualification.

Before the release of my results, I was actually pretty down about graduating. I don’t want to walk onto stage in front of hundreds of people – I feel sick just thinking about it. There’s so many outdated, old-fashioned rules that have to be followed during a graduation ceremony too, so it’s really not my cup of tea. But, now I have my results, it feels like it can be an actual celebration. A goodbye to two of the best and two of the worst years of my life. University has been an absolute rollercoaster of emotions!

During this time, me and Matthew built our little family together. We wouldn’t have our home if we didn’t decide to study at The University of Hull. We wouldn’t have our cats. Our life is wonderful and, despite the ups and downs we faced at university, coming home together was always happy.

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Have you had any good news lately?

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You can read my previous post here.

 

Mince Pies and Pokémon

With today being my last day of work before Christmas, and with the company preparing to shut down for Christmas break, today was a strange and speedy day.

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I was, of course, bursting at the seams with excitement and relief that this was my final day for a whole two weeks! I’m definitely in need of a good sleep, and I just knew that the Christmas ‘feel’ would arrive once work was out of the way. I just kept counting down the hours…

“In 8/7/6/5/4/3/2/1 hours time, I’ll be on my Christmas holiday and then it’s officially Christmas” -Me, every single hour, all day.

Everybody else in the office didn’t book next week of work and will still be working until the 23rd, but not me! I doubt my little body and mind could have managed. You know when you’re just ready for a break?

I could feel my blood fizzing with anticipation. There wasn’t any work for me to complete, apart from my own personal, scholarship project. That, though, can be done any time, anywhere so after an hour or so adding a few more features to the program, I just left it for the day.

Instead, the whole office joined together in a festive flurry of Christmas jumpers, music, food and several games of Pokémon (the trading card game, of course)… yep, us Computer Science folk are definitely living up to the reputation right now.

 

So what am I so excited about?

Over the Christmas holiday, I will be spending every waking second I can in the company of my ridiculously wonderful, handsome and caring Matt. We’ll be spending time with family, eating food, lots of drink, blowing the dust of my camera and taking it for a spin, going to museums and parks and playing games. Everything we can’t do whilst we’re ‘adulting’ in the every day 9-5 fiasco people like to call life. And I’m so, so excited.

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Are you breaking off for Christmas this year, or are you working over the holidays? 

Merry Christmas, lovelies! 

-Morgan

 

 

Making Assumptions

“And if you insist on continuing to make assumptions about my character, I’ll advise you only this: assume you will always be wrong.”
Tahereh Mafi

Many people make assumptions all the time, and it’s crap. We’re taught early in our lives “don’t judge a book by it’s cover”, yet so many people take no notice. Your age, your hair colour, your gender, your race, your home town, your choice of clothing, your favorite colour… None of that should matter. If you’re into pink dresses and Harry Potter pyjamas, fine. If you enjoy romantic comedies and Star Wars, fine. If you like both books and movies, fine. You like new music, classical music and country music, fine. It’s absolutely nobody’s business, and nobody should make the assumption that just because you like this you’re unable to like that. I’m a very emotional person, and when people presume things about me, it really does hurt my feelings.

Today at work, somebody was making absolutely ridiculous assumptions that anybody who plays the Sims (the super addictive, super fun simulation game), is the type of person who “uses Internet Explorer” and is the type of person who “wouldn’t know how to install a different browser”. They may not seem offensive, but they’re regularly used as a derogative meme in computing, and to openly assume a fan of a particular game has little computing knowledge is stupid and completely immature.

The day before this I was chatting to a colleague about a game I was currently playing at home, which was Spyro the Dragon, my lovely attempt to throwback to my awesome childhood. An hour or so later, he made a belittling comment to someone else “wow, I can’t believe she would like this game. She plays Spyro” as if my current nostalgic game play has absolutely anything to do with my regular choice of game… Again, it makes absolutely no difference and people shouldn’t make such obscure assumptions.

On Tuesday I went to a graduate fair, hoping to speak to some companies about graduate software development jobs next year. Instead, I was completely ignored by all the male representatives as they spoke happily to the guys I attended the event with. The only representative who  spoke to me was a lady who questioned whether or not I was finding it hard being a woman in a male-dominated industry.

Hmm

I’ve had this my entire life and it’s not getting any easier to deal with. I have a huge variety of hobbies, and people seem to be confused on how I can like Doctor Who and pretty dresses and nerdy t-shirts and games and lipstick all at the same time. Then, tiny, 5’3″, girly, geeky Morgan decides to head down the brilliant path of computer science, and the assumptions continue. “Girls can’t code” – shut your sexist mouth, and leave.

My point is, when you make assumptions about people especially to their face, chances are you are going to hurt their feelings.

-Morgan

First Day @ Work | Seed Software

Today was a super exciting day – I can now officially call myself a software developer, because today was my first day at work! I’m working for Seed Software, who provide dependable front line, mission critical software solutions for the fire department in the UK. How exciting is that?! Because I already knew all of the other guys (and girl) after spending a team building day with them, I wasn’t slightly as nervous as I thought I would be.

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I have to take a second to say this though… I’m adulting in the real world. That’s scary! I’ve been thrown into the deep end of a company, and left to fend for myself. It’s such a great opportunity, and I can’t wait to get my brain stuck in, but there’s always the slither of doubt: can you do this?anigif_enhanced-22726-1442759712-2
If I wasn’t capable, they wouldn’t have hired me so shut your face negativity.

I’ll finally be on a regular 9 to 5 schedule, which means my blog will benefit hugely too! My posts will be far more regular, and presumably will be a lot more planned as I won’t have the luxury of time to sit around thinking about which blog post I’d like to do tonight! I presume there will also be much more variety arriving to my blog. With Monday to Friday consumed wholly by technology, I can only imagine that this will seep into my blog world too.

Not including how happy I am to be working with this company, I’m most happy to be gaining routine again! It makes the evenings and the weekends so special. Like tonight, for example, after a long day at Seed, when I arrived home me and Matt instantly got into pyjamas, closed the curtains, lit the candles and dimmed the lights. It’s timed perfectly with the coming Winter months!


Short and sweet update from me! I just wanted to let you guys know the good news!

I hope you’re all well!
Thanks for reading, lovelies.

-Morgan

What I Learned From Two Socially Awkward Years at University

Let’s start by painting a mental picture. Think of a typical group of 19/20 year old students. Think of student hobbies, think of student lifestyle, think of student housing and think of student mentality. Like most, I bet you thought of a group of young, wild, loud, messy, lazy teenagers who still rely on their parents for money which they eagerly waste on alcohol and noodles they eat out of the pan. Was I close?

In comparison, I felt like a 60 year old lady. Whilst the rest of my peers would head off to the student bar in between lectures, I’d head over to the library. As they returned to the student bar after class, I’d much rather head home to my tidy, cosy home where my cats, kettle and fluffy pyjamas await me. I must have been a bit naive to presume that just because I was studying a stereotypically ‘nerdy’ subject there wouldn’t be a whole lot of the above.

University of Hull

The University of Hull

Although I felt uncomfortable and awkward at first, eventually I realised it doesn’t matter. I lost the care for what people think about me long ago, probably when I was around 18 and fresh out of sixth form. I’d suffered enough public stress breakdowns from the work load to be embarrassed of taking pride in my education!

I realise not everybody (okay, more like barely anyone) my age who is studying at university is like me. Chances are you were/are probably just as wild at heart, but if you’re not that’s okay too. There is such a strong media presence of the ‘typical’ student, that people presume it’s the norm and follow in the footsteps of those before them. I’m settled and I’m happy. I’m lucky enough to have started a huge chapter of my life early, because I found my soul mate and my search is over. People have different priorities, different hobbies and different lifestyles.

If you happen to be starting your first year of university (or even are returning with a change of heart) and dreading this social situation,

  • Don’t let anybody force you into going anywhere/doing anything that makes you uncomfortable.
  • You’re not boring. You would simply much prefer to spend your free time somewhere you can talk to your friends and actually hear what they’re saying.
  • Find a friend who has the same attitude as yourself. Whilst everyone else wastes a bunch of money at a nightclub, you can treat yourself to pizza, booze and films at your place!
  • Don’t feel unwelcome just because you aren’t a regular at the bar. If you fancy a night out, go for it. No one will judge you. No one cares enough. They will just be happy you’re there!
  • Do what makes you happy, and stop worrying about what others think of you.
  • Despite all the above, just try to enjoy yourself. It doesn’t last long, and I can’t imagine there is much freedom after graduation!

Hope you’ve had a nice day, lovelies!
How was your university experience? Did you live the typical student life, or find a different path?

-Morgan

Blonde Prejudice | Is It Worth Going Back?

Who’d have thought your hair colour would be such an important consideration when studying in a male-dominated course? Nope, me neither.

I’ve recently been thinking about changing my hair colour, from my current and much loved ‘Ruby Red’ back to blonde. Not because I don’t like my red hair, I have a super crush on red lips/red hair/red nails combo so it’s not that. It’s just that I’m pretty much as pale as you get – I don’t tan, I burn, I’m one of those. I thought, now Summer is ending, maybe I should go blonde again so that the paleness of my face against my dark red hair doesn’t blind passers by once it hits Winter.

Me and Matt

Me and Matt, 2012. My favourite shade of blonde!

I decided, yep, that’s what I’ll do. I even began to plan Halloween costume ideas around my blonde hair! But then I began to think about why I changed from my blonde hair to red in the first place.

As you probably have guessed by the title of my blog, I’m a Computer Science student and I do love it. However, there aren’t many female students on this course – I think there are 12 women out of almost 200 students and this is something I found super uncomfortable to start with. I was always overlooked. It seemed that lecturers automatically presumed I was no-good, and I’ve had some pretty crappy comments from both lecturers and students alike whilst I’ve studied there. Well, I showed them how wrong they were with some pretty awesome results (go, me).

Anyway, some of the comments I received were actually about my hair, believe it or not! At the time, I was blonde and I was regularly taunted with the whole ‘dumb blonde’ idea. How hair colour determines intelligence is beyond me, but let’s not get into that. I thought maybe the guys would take me more seriously if I changed my hair colour, and was a ‘quirky’ red head instead or something. Maybe they wouldn’t think I was stupid, and I’d be able to go a couple of days without a “go back to hairdressing” remark. And that’s what I did.

So, my dilemma: Will the personal confidence boost that blonde hair would give me outweigh the confidence knock that I’ve faced before? Is it worth the risk of being judged instantly? Is is worth the daily taunts about my intelligence? Will I regret it if I revert back to wearing no make-up and plain clothes so people don’t think I’m a stereotypical blonde?

I’m sure some people will just think “oh, it’s not a big deal, just dye your hair whatever bloody colour you like”, but when it’s your future and your studies that are being walked all over it’s not that easy.


Thanks for reading.

Have any of you experienced anything like this before? Did you manage to overcome it?

-Morgan

The Perks of Marrying a Computer Scientist

Evening,

Matt wrote a funny little post tonight about the embarrassing situation I ended up in yesterday – and that is why you shouldn’t presume anything based solely on gender and their hobbies!

The Perks of Marrying a Computer Scientist.

-Morgan