So this is it, my last official blog post! I may still post here occasionally to provide my thoughts on dissertation writing and things, but I can’t promise anything until I know how busy I will be with it! ALSO, be sure to see the special section at the bottom of this post!!
Anyways, from meeting great people to overcoming one of the most mentally challenging experiences of my life, my MSc year at Aston has left me with some great memories.
From a personal perspective, this year was full of “firsts” for me. This was the first time I lived in a foreign country for such a long period of time; it was the first time I lived with a partner (which was a great experience that brought us closer as a couple!); and it was the first time I went to Spain!
I learned a lot about myself during this year and feel that I’ve done a lot of growing up. It’s different when you live thousands of miles away from your friends and family: you don’t have them to rely on if something goes wrong and they are more than likely not familiar with your new home so they can’t give you advice if you aren’t sure what to do. For instance, when it comes to dealing with leases for flats or knowing which fees and taxes you are meant to pay, you are completely on your own. It’s on you to seek out the answers from advisers or fellow colleagues who have been through it. For me, this was a challenge as my mom is very knowledgeable in a lot of different areas and she can usually give me this advice when I need it. While it was a big adjustment, I feel like it was necessary one as I begin a career path abroad.
Academically, this was BY FAR the most challenging year of my life. There is literally no comparison to the amount of work – and the expectations for the quality of that work – between my MSc and my undergrad. While my undergrad was difficult at times, the MSc programme at Aston challenges you to be your best at all times. Of course, this does depend on how much you are willing to put into it, but if you striving for a Distinction, you will have to work for it. As I mentioned before, I found Term 2 much harder than Term 1, but in general, both terms require high levels of focus, commitment, and hard work. But rest assured, the hard work and time spent studying are well worth it as I feel much more prepared to begin my career than I did after finishing my undergraduate degree!
Overall, this year has been much more rewarding than I ever thought it would be. I’ve learned a lot about myself and my craft, and I feel I am ready to begin a career and see where life takes me!
One last thing:
This is my friend Chris Hedderick. Apart from being a really nice, intelligent guy, he also happens to have a pretty big heart. He’s currently trying to raise money for a project called Balloon Adventures. His plan is to travel to Kenya as a volunteer to help local business owners with their new ventures. It’s a really great opportunity with a great mission, and he could use your help! Below is a link to his JustGiving page, either click the link or the picture to go to his page. Any amount you can donate would be greatly appreciated as he tries to reach his goal of £800!