Kaushal Rajan, India
I'm a first year from Gujarat, India, taking an undergraduate degree in Geography at St Mary’s. I wanted to study geography and this isn't offered at Indian universities, so it was important that I could find somewhere in the UK that could provide this subject.
I chose St Mary’s because I wanted to study in London and it seemed to offer a good welcome to international students and a course that suited me. Geography is an interesting and relevant discipline for me because it explores the relationships between the earth, people and environment.
I'm hoping to continue my studies at Masters level, with a view to becoming involved in environmental management when I've finished my education.
Shweta Sharma, India
Film and Television
After completing a Masters in Film Studies at another university, I started looking for PhDs in the area of my specialisation.
St Mary’s gave me a scholarship to do my research in the department of Arts and Humanities. An excellent supervisory team is leading me through the challenging process. My supervisors gave me extra support when I started doing some part-time teaching in the department, which came as part of the PhD.
The lecturers helped me prepare and most importantly helped me gain the confidence to address a group of students. Located close to three train stations, St Mary’s is only 40-minutes away from Central London.
This comes in very handy, since I have to visit the British Film Institute and the British Library frequently for research and resources.
Albertus Putro, Indonesia
Management Studies and Business Law
As soon as I successfully passed my Diploma from Brookes University in Oxford, I was accepted by St Mary’s. Initially I had a problem with my visa which really affected my studies. However, the International Office were very helpful and they supported me until the issue was solved.
Now, I am in my second year at St Mary’s and I find it more interesting than last year. I am currently studying towards a BA in Management Studies and Business Law. The courses are very interesting and the lecturers are very supportive and approachable. You can talk to them on an one-to-one basis, come to their office anytime and ask for help. The location of the campus is perfect for studying as it is away from very busy places in central London. This helps me to stay focused on my studies.
The campus is also conveniently situated as central London is only half an hour away. I also enjoy the community that exists within St Mary’s, my class mates are welcoming. They are also highly motivated to do well. I think the experience that I am gaining at St Mary’s will be very helpful for my future prospects.
Natsuko Suda, Japan
Media Arts with Film and Television
After completing an HND in Media (Moving Image) in Walsall, West Midlands, I transferred to the final year of the St Mary’s BA degree.
London is a vibrant city and it has a good reputation all over the world for creative ideas and media. St Mary’s caught my eye because of the flexibility it offered in subject choices and because it seemed unique. I wanted to continue improving my practical skills, but at the same time I needed to learn the theoretical aspects of Media.
It is hard to find a course with a practical element in the final year as most universities focus on the dissertation. However, St Mary’s offers a wide range of practical modules such as Web Design, TV Production, Video Production and Radio Production. I think the balance between theory and practical modules at St Mary’s is very attractive and it gives us a great opportunity to get a job easily.
My life at St Mary’s went so quick. The transition from the HND was complicated but I had great support from the tutors. It is definitely one of the advantages of studying at St Mary’s that we can get support like that. The friendly atmosphere makes student life much more enjoyable. My first impression of St Mary’s when I came for an interview never changed until the last minute, and it is definitely a most welcoming place to study
Judy El Khoury, Lebanon
Education and Social Science and Cultural Studies
St Mary’s was recommended to me as a good place to study if I was interested in Education. Initially, there was a lot of theory to get through and my minor in Cultural Studies helped me a great deal to understand UK culture better.
As part of my major in Education and Employment I completed a Work Experience Module teaching French, which was great, as I studied at a French school in Kuwait before coming to the UK. I will complete a PGCE after my undergraduate degree to become a qualified teacher but my joint first degree subjects will always help me to keep my options open.
Isabelle Yeow, Malaysia
With siblings who are graduates of Oxford and Imperial, the pressure was on. My parents insisted that I study in the UK too; it was just a question of finding the right course and the right university. Even though I have always considered myself to be a humanities person, I really enjoy the research methods and statistics element of my degree, alongside other subjects such as Child Psychology, Health Psychology and the Psychology of Ageing.
The first semester of the first year was hard and I felt a bit homesick. I lived in halls on campus but it was actually my local British friends from my course who helped me through. It is one of the best features of St Mary’s that you get to know local students - other universities in London have so many international students that they simply cannot offer the same experience. I took my British friends to Chinatown in London, which they really enjoyed. They were interested in finding out about Malaysian culture from me and I always make sure to bring something back for them from home. They really liked the batik scarves from Kuala Lumpur!
Academically, something clicked for me in the second semester of the first year. My results weren’t bad before at all, but I am now getting results in the 60-70% region consistently, which is considered really good in the British system. I feel that the teaching here suits my particular learning style and I get the chance to explore much more of my subject through practical coursework rather than just memorising data for exams.
My Psychology Programme Director is extremely helpful. I was scared of her to start with but she turned out to be a no-nonsense person who will actually do everything she can to help us do well in our assignments. My parents were right in thinking that I would get much more personal attention at a smaller university.
Henry Osokolo, Nigeria
Drama with Film and Television
My first degree is in Banking and Finance, but I wanted to do something completely different… I had TV, film and theatre work in Lagos, Nigeria and I want to go back when I finish. There are some good art schools at home but a degree from St Mary’s will be more recognised than a qualification from home.
Here, the facilities are top range and we gain lots of practical knowledge and experience. I'm also working on getting some relevant work experience here in the UK before I head back home.
Moiz Munir Teli, Pakistan
Having completed a two year BCom at the University of Karachi, I was accepted by St Mary’s for direct entry into the 2nd year of the Management Studies degree.
All the students on my programme are very serious about their studies and we enjoy working together on group projects and presentations. I am currently at the top of my class in one of my subjects, Practitioner's Skills for Management. The tutors are really approachable and there is always support available when someone needs it.
I am staying in halls on campus with meals provided and that helps me focus on studying. I am very happy with the facilities that St Mary’s provides and I have also made contact with other Muslim students on campus.
Taimour Akhtar, Pakistan
I studied for two years at a private college in London before starting my degree. I am now glad to be studying at an accredited, recognised institution. The teaching at St Mary’s is of much higher quality and the degree work that I am doing is really valuable. I also think that I have a better opportunity to develop my English language skills.
Most students from my country want to study business subjects - we see this as the best investment for our future. I am staying off campus in rented accommodation and the short train journey to campus is easy and affordable. Although my family support me from home with paying the fees, I also work part time to help towards living expenses.
Pauline De Guzman, the Philippines
I was accepted by three different universities in London for my BSc Nutrition course before I decided that St Mary’s was the one for me. One of the primary reasons I chose St Mary’s is that the attention and guidance they have shown me as an international student was far greater and more personal than either of the two other universities displayed. This gave me a very good impression and flavour of what my university life would be at St Mary’s for the duration of my course.
Apart from the quality of teaching and the helpful and approachable professors, what I love about the method of teaching is that they allow the students to develop into independent learners and thinkers. This is important for the quality and practicality of graduates produced by universities. There is no spoon feeding and it’s a challenge to get good marks on the modules. This motivates me to aim even higher and progress in the course.
St Mary’s has all the important elements combined to give its students the quality of balanced education in a friendly and supportive campus atmosphere with modern facilities to secure you a gateway to future employability.
Maria Yordanova, Russia
I came to the UK as a student to improve my English. After completing my language course I decided to transfer my degree studies from University in St Petersburg to St Mary’s, which was quite straightforward.
I do enjoy my studies a lot. I am very interested in Events Management and currently work for St Mary’s University on a part time basis helping out with various projects. The experience will be very useful for my CV.
Daminda Henakaralalage, Sri Lanka
Strength and Conditioning Science
I worked as a fitness trainer in Colombo for years and I decided to come to the UK to get a relevant qualification. I heard about St Mary’s from friends, who told me that here I will have all the equipment and all the sports grounds that I need for my studies on one campus, which is great.
I want to complete a Masters and a PhD at St Mary’s, then return home to set up my own training centre. Maybe I will run a joint study course with St Mary’s one day!
Emelie Fritzell, Sweden
English and Creative and Professional Writing
I wanted to study away from home and to do something with the English language as I studied it since I was little. Student writing is taken very seriously on my course; you really feel you are getting somewhere with your work.
All the tutors know you personally and we regularly have professional writers and editors visiting too. There are so many things you can do with writing. Living on campus for my first year was a very good idea as it helped me to make friends very easily.
Chelsea Hill, USA
Marketing, History, Physical Theatre, Geography
The location of St Mary’s is perfect, within easy reach of the city, the rest of the UK and the whole of Europe. Teaching styles are different, but we get plenty of advice and support. I have made good friends through my theatre group and the Christian Union.
I am enjoying my independence and it will be difficult to move back home. In fact, I am thinking about staying for another semester.
Mary Myer, USA
Physical Theatre, Shakespeare
Spending a semester at St Mary’s was one of the best decisions I’ve made. I found my classes engaging and exciting. I enjoyed the energy of my fellow students and loved how involved and incredibly knowledgeable my professors were.
I’m immensely proud of the work I’ve had the chance to produce. I took advantage of everything central London had to offer, from theatre, art and history to food. My semester away from home has made me a stronger person and certainly a more knowledgeable student.