An Oxford university student has been touched by “wonderful people” who’ve tried to help her after two years’ worth of lecture notes were stolen before her exams.
From late nights followed by early mornings, revising for exams is no easy feat – especially if you have two years’ worth of notes to get through.
Spare a kind thought or two then for Anne-Marie Downes, an Oxford University student in her final year, who’s had all of her lecture notes stolen six weeks before her final exams.
While in Durham for a wedding on Saturday 7 April, Downes’ bag containing her laptop and all of her notes were stolen from her family’s car. And it’s imperative that the Philosophy, Politics and Economics student gets her notes back as she has a learning disability “which makes sorting through notes difficult, especially on a screen.”
Finding herself in every student’s worst nightmare, Downes took to Twitter to ask for help.
1/: Hi Twitter - I'd be very grateful if people could share this thread! TL;DR: A bag was stolen from me in Durham yesterday and it contained nearly all my notes and work for my finals, which are in six weeks. I'm hoping they dumped the bag/contents and someone may find them.— Anne-Marie Downes (@am_downes) April 8, 2018
2/: Yesterday (Sat 7th April) between 12 and 3pm our car was broken into in Durham in the car park in Pimlico, just off Prebends Bridge. My rucksack with my laptop, some other electronics and a lot of notebooks and folders containing two years’ worth of uni work was stolen.— Anne-Marie Downes (@am_downes) April 8, 2018
Downes has stressed that the other things in her bag - like her laptop - are not of high importance.
3/: Finals are in six weeks’ time and I really need my lecture, tutorial and revision notes. I am hoping that whoever stole my bag will have removed the electronics and then dumped the rest somewhere - we found my pencil case in a nearby bush but unfortunately nothing else.— Anne-Marie Downes (@am_downes) April 8, 2018
4/: If you live in or around the Durham/Sunderland area, I’d be really grateful if you could keep an eye out for the bag or the notebooks and papers (description below), especially in bins, secluded wooded areas or general wasteland.— Anne-Marie Downes (@am_downes) April 8, 2018
The student has provided people with a description of her bag: dark blue rucksack with bright flowers.
5/: Bag: dark blue rucksack with bright flowers. Contents: laptop with charger, headset with mic for my assistive note-taking tech, medication, 2 large and 2 small spiralbound notebooks with lecture and reading notes, purple A5 notebook with my dissertation reading notes, plans— Anne-Marie Downes (@am_downes) April 8, 2018
However, the resulting response on social media caught her completely by surprise.
That’s right: countless students and professors at Oxford University have reached out to Downes and offered her their own notes, in a bid to help her prepare for her exams.
I'm so so grateful to everyone sharing this and giving advice, especially to those who have said they live in the area and can have a look around! You are all such wonderful people, thank you so much <3— Anne-Marie Downes (@am_downes) April 9, 2018
Now, Downes is feeling less stressed at the thought of sitting her exams without her notes in six weeks’ time.
“It was such a relief to read people’s kind messages and to have people in Durham say they would keep a look out, and I’m feeling so much more calm now that I have been sent notes to work with,” Downes tells HuffPost UK. “It’s obviously still not ideal because two years of my own work is difficult to replace, but I’m in a much better place than just a few days ago.”
Two fellow students, who have their own revision to do, have even taken the time to sit with Downes and go through their own notes together.
An update for all the lovely people who have been asking: nothing has been found yet unfortunately (although with this many people helping I have hope!) but people who are doing/have done the same course as me have been sending me their own notes which is incredibly kind ❤️— Anne-Marie Downes (@am_downes) April 9, 2018
If you find the bag or some of its contents, please contact Downes on Twitter. Alternatively, you can call Durham Police or email email@example.com.