Postgraduate Blues

Lectures have begun yet again and this semester isn’t playing any games! Day 1 consisted of being told we had to start now about serious dissertation outlining, planning, and preparing. Not what you want to hear on your first day in class after a shorter-than-deserved break. So between trying to plan meetings with my advisor, attempting to keep up with all my coursework, interning, planning holidays, and maintaining a social life – I have been exhausted. I really try to avoid talking about Uni in most of my blogs, but I don’t think I was prepared for this much stress to occur all at once. Although I went to a great school for my undergrad I don’t think they really prepare you for further education. In high school you’re often told that you’ll need this skill for college and that skill for university and professors are so different from teachers in high school, etc. But, in undergrad they don’t really seem to give you that guidance for postgrad education. I’m not necessarily saying postgrad is much harder or way different, but there are definitely differences and there is a heavier emphasis on independent learning, instead of learning from a lecture, which just isn’t how I’ve ever been taught before.

On the bright side, I got all my marks back and did pretty well. That is something I think is much different here than undergrad. Maybe it’s just the school I went to, but for the most part people really wanted to help one another do well and it wasn’t about who got the higher grade, but just making sure all your friends and classmates were able to pass. I’ve realized here more people are concerned with getting the highest mark or bettering themselves and I’ve never experienced such a competitive academic atmosphere. I enjoy feeling that communal environment and it is definitely a feeling I miss.

Although it seems like I’m complaining, for the most part I am reflecting. I’ve been living in the UK for nearly 6 months and I think there are such major differences between higher education here and higher education in the U.S.  There are definitely some things I like a lot more back home, but I’ve also enjoyed many of the things I’ve had the opportunity to gain here. I can’t even argue if one is better than the other and who knows if I would have experienced some of these things back home. I think most of me is just starting to become really homesick and thus I start comparing life here versus life in California.

Anyway, I’m sure my next blog will be more uplifting and I will attach some pictures next time as well!

P.S.- Did anyone watch that Ivory Coast final game?! I’ve never seen it go down to goalkeepers. What a game!

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