On the 17th of September a group of us lucky student ambassadors were invited to our new chancellor, Bonnie Greer's, inauguration ceremony. As we arrived and entered the Lawley Lecture theatre at the Kingston Hill campus, we were greeted by the sounds of a live trumpet quartet. I'm glad I did end up buying a smart shirt and tie just before arriving, as everyone was dressed to impress. There was a real mix of students, lecturers, senior members of staff and many other VIP's. As Bonnie Greer walked in there was a buzz in the air and my friend next to me was primed with her pen and paper, ready to take notes for the Kingston River (student newspaper).
I found Greers' speech humbling and heartfelt. Not once did she look down at her notes and at one point she got quite emotional. She retold an event, which happened to her when she was studying for her undergraduate. She explained how she had no money left and one of her lecturers had kindly offered to pay a term of her university fees. I found that her story of coming from nothing was inspiring and sets the perfect example for students of what is possible if you put your mind to it.
Later in the evening we were invited for drinks and refreshments in the new Business Atrium building. Canapés, Cava and a live Jazz band were the perfect recipe for networking. I managed to talk to a former student who is currently on the Kingston graduate scheme about how he was finding his placement and what he thought of the scheme. He also gave me a few tips on what I should do if I should apply for it. Later, I found a few of the other ambassadors and we decided to go and welcome Bonnie Greer and explained a little bit about the SA scheme. We all shook her hand and had our photo taken with her. It was a perfect end to a wonderful evening.
In about two weeks I start my 3rd and last year of studies at Kingston. It's so true; time does fly by very quickly. Now that I've come this far, there's definitely no giving up and there is no going back. Feeling excited? Well, I'm most definitely excited, passionate and determined about my third year at Kingston. Why am I feeling excited about my third year at Kingston? I am excited because Kingston for me is like studying at home. Kingston provides this comfortable, welcoming and relaxed atmosphere. The university offers a great range of different support and social networks/societies to keep you busy, well informed and integrated. Also, the university has taught me a range of new transferable skills such as the ability to interpret and look at a wide range of issues and make sense of them. The above skill has definitely helped me to progress through my course and has made me more inspired, excited and eager to get back to the hard work.
Although, I had the most lovely summer break relaxing on the beach in Portugal and roller-skating with my friends near Vauxhall. This summer gave me time to reflect on the fact that 2nd year had finished. I am now thinking about how am I going to cope with my studies and my social life in 3rd year? Words that came to mind were about planning ahead, prioritising and making/sticking to deadlines. In fact, due to my excitement and enthusiasm about being in 3rd year, I had already started planning ahead by shopping around for the educational essentials such as value priced notepads, a packet of black ball-point pens and post-it notes from a range of stationary shops. Also, I spent a few minutes trailing through my course module guides identifying the core books to buy on Amazon at a discounted price.
As you may know, being a student means having to budget and to manage your money really carefully. Yes, as students we may feel tempted to buy things which we may not necessarily need. But, always remember that money for rent, accommodation and food should be a high priority. In my case, I try to balance the costs of being a student; I am managing my budget more efficiently by putting aside money each month to pay for travel to Kingston. Lastly, when coming to university being organised is a must! So, if you haven't been as organised as you can in your first or second year, your success in third year pretty much relies on you being able to manage your time efficiently.
After my return to Pittsburgh nearly two months ago, I made a point to reunite with old friends and make a day of it at the beach. Presque Isle to be precise, otherwise known as Erie beach. It is one of the five great lakes in the USA and packed with fun things to do. There is Splash Lagoon for the lover of water parks and biking and hiking paths for those looking for a little adventure. My friends, James and Michelle were excited about seeing me again since two years ago when we last met. We have all known each other since 2007.
I was happy to see that we could enjoy the beauty of Erie beach, bask out in the sun and set up a small picnic which included granola bars, chips (crisps for those in Britain), cans of pop and a large cookie cake. Unfortunately by accident I stepped on the outer edge of the cookie cake while setting up the umbrella but later the sand made its way into the tray so in the end it wasn't good for us to eat it. The weather was perfect, the waves weren't too high and the seagulls were pining for some of our food. I think the best part of our day was pretending we were on Baywatch, running around on the beach as if we were about to rescue someone. Even the lifeguard was watching us and laughing, and some random beach goers.
While in the water we saw some tiny fish swim beneath us and found some unusual shaped and coloured rocks. I picked one up which had been buried deep in the sand, it was purple and unique looking. I kept it as a souvenir from our day out. Later on we walked along the beach and told jokes and sang silly songs which made Michele laugh out loud. We eventually left and made our way to a restaurant I Erie. By that time we were all quite exhausted and very hungry. Michelle and I enjoyed a great chicken dinner while James went for the shrimp and pasta dish. As we all were driving home we recalled old times with each other and also spoke of what we have been up to in recent times. I spoke of my fun times in London and student life at Kingston University.
They were fascinated and really impressed that I went all the way to London for higher education. Hopefully we will make a trip to London next year where I could show them all the great places I was privileged to see during my three years as a student.
The Kingston University Knights Park student union bar on a fundraiser night.
Uploaded 20 Dec 2013
Sport at Kingston
Uploaded 20 Dec 2013
My Hobby - Photography
Uploaded 20 Dec 2013