Tell us a bit about your background…
I am from Kazakhstan and my undergraduate degree was related to journalism. I studied in Kazakh, my native language. Being at Strathclyde is my first time studying in English and I chose media and communication because I had a diploma in journalism practice and I wanted to further my studies in this area.
Why did you choose to study at the University of Strathclyde?
When I was applying I sent my applications to a few universities. I liked Strathclyde because the staff were very helpful and were very responsive with any queries I had. I got some advice from the academic staff. Most universities in the UK offer a degree that in some way focuses on journalism. At that time I was studying an academic English course in Exeter. I wanted to study in Scotland and in the largest city in Scotland.
Did you seek any support during the application process?
Strathclyde was the first university I applied to. I accidently withdrew my application and asked for support from the team to get my application back on track. They helpfully guided me through this.
What has been the highlight of your time at Strathclyde so far?
When I came here it was challenging to write my first academic essay, in the English language. I was struggling and didn’t know what to do. My group mates were always helping me and providing me with great support. It was a huge help for me. It was a really challenging time and I appreciated the advice they were able to give me. Students at Strathclyde are friendly and helpful.
What would be your advice for people considering taking the course at Strathclyde?
For those students who want to practice more in this area it would be useful to choose digital journalism but those that want to study more theoretical topics it would be good to choose media and communication. All of our professors and teachers are very helpful, I have enjoyed my time here.
What would you say to students thinking about coming over from Kazakhstan?
You have the option to interact with the support team that can help with essay questions and general motivation. I have a special scholarship from my government, it was the first time in the history of the scholarship to have the option to study at Strathclyde. There is a long list of universities to choose from, I would advise my friends to come here if they can. At first, I was doubtful as I hadn’t heard of this university but now I’m sure I’ve made the right choice, it really is the place of useful learning. I would recommend it to anyone thinking of coming to Scotland.
What do you think of the support available during your course?
I was always consulting with the course support team, can I choose this topic for my essay etc. They were always so supportive, I was contacting them during the weekend and they were always helpful and available. I really appreciate it because as an international student it is a big move for me. I am always sitting in the library and the library staff are always helping me!
What are your ambitions for the future?
The way my scholarship works I need to be back in Kazakhstan and work for my government for three to five years. I am a journalist in my home country and I will continue my job as a journalist. I hope my time in Glasgow will help me develop in the future. English speaking journalists have a lot more opportunities to climb the career ladder.
Do you have any other thoughts or advice that you would like to share on your course?
I want to advise students that time management is very important because you need to write one essay and another deadline and presentation. At first I was struggling with managing my time. I looked at my group mates, saw them working so hard and that made me want to work hard too! After that, I tried my best to finish my essays as soon as possible.