International students - We all know a few. Indeed, Birmingham uni seems to have a lot of them. I am an international student myself. In my two years here, I have learnt a few things about being an international student. There are many types - the meek, the party animal, the enthusiast, the really enthusiastic person who shows up to every lecture and makes the most of every moment at university. I met one such student - Nicky Nina Ma, a first year Psychology student from China. And what makes her so enterprising?
As a first year, she's just entered university life in the UK. Its all brand new and very different. Meeting people from around the world and learning all about new cultures motivates her to attend everything that happens on campus, as much as she can. She finds Birmingham uni very diverse and that people accept all sorts of different cultures here. Its all open.
Instead of being overwhelmed by how different everything was in the beginning, she embraced it. So far, she has worked as an international students prospective caller, and as a member of the catering staff for different food outlets around the university. She's also a Student Rep, a Senior Rep of School of Psychology, College Rep of Life and Environmental Sciences. As a rep, she gets lots of training and workshops that she learns a lot from. She also volunteers in One World Cafe once every week, as they run an event for international students to meet. She is also an BME ambassador.
Nicky has also participated in the B-Start Up Bootcamp, which she calls the 'best decision I ever made', as she and her team ended up winning a day trip to Virgin.
"I'm the kind of person that is open to everything. Even if something is not the type of thing I might do in the future, I still go have a look for the experience. And to explore more options."She is also a part of many societies, like the Womens Association. She has also been selected as the Chinese Editor of the linguist magazine, for the next year. She attends several talks, guest lectures, and event across different schools.
Why does she do so many things?
" I can't stand having nothing to do. There is no point in paying so much and coming here to study, if I'm in my room all the time. I love being busy! An extra benefit- I've got no time to be homesick!"
Nicky has enjoyed university life to the full extent. She's met loads of people, got lots of skills, and loves her course. She has never skipped a lecture yet. According to her, university life is all about having fun and learning. Learning by doing everything, not just academics.
Her wise words -