April 1, 2020, by International students
International Student Ambassadors: Maaz from Pakistan
Maaz is a Pakistani student who is studying BEng Chemical Engineering including an Industrial Year
Why did you choose the University of Nottingham?
The university is highly ranked for my degree and compared to other universities I applied to, it offered the option of an industrial year. This was important to me as I wanted to gain some work experience during my studies. Before making a decision, I wanted to get a feel of the campus life, so I watched a few online videos, particularly of the University Park campus because my course was based there. It looked beautiful and I thought I’d enjoy my time there. Now in the final year of my degree when I look back, I feel I made the right decision.
What is your favourite thing about the University of Nottingham?
The University Park campus- its huge!! And I’m glad I chose this university over others which had smaller campuses. There is something for everyone. Those interested in sports for example, would love the new sports facility that opened a few years ago. The student union building at the heart of the campus is a great place to socialise with friends or meet new people. It also has many different bars, cafes and restaurants to cater for all tastes and dietary requirements. Opposite the students’ union building is the beautiful lakeside with its surrounding greenery that would appeal to any nature enthusiast.
What is the best thing about your course?
Chemical Engineering is quite tough. But unlike most other degrees it equips you with a wide variety of skills that allow you to choose between different career paths. I have completed business internships and want to work in a business-related role in the future. Even though I’m not studying a business-related subject, I have gained most of the skills that students from other degrees have like communication teamwork etc. But I feel I can sometimes have the edge over other students because of some excellent problem solving and analytical skills I developed by working on complex tasks in my degree.
What do you do with your spare time, and what are your hobbies?
I’m quite an outdoor person and that’s why I enjoy sports and travelling. The university has some great sports facilities where I’ve not only continued playing the sports I love, but also tried some new sports such as boxing and mixed martial arts. I was a member of the travel society for my first two years and got the chance to visit many of the UK’s most popular landmarks. Specifically, I look for nature and adventure when travelling and this has made me develop an interest in nature photography over the last few years too.
What do you like about Nottingham as a city?
Nottingham is a student friendly city with a lot to see and do. It has many things you’d find in a big city but is small enough to walk around. Longer distances aren’t a problem either as the public transport system is reliable, regular and affordable with many student discounts and deals to choose from. The large number of students makes it a vibrant and bustling city with fantastic nightlife and cuisine from all over the world.
What would be your top tips for a new international student starting at the University of Nottingham in their first year?
Don’t make the mistake of locking yourself in your room in the beginning! Go out and meet people, including other international students. This is a rare opportunity to have a multicultural group of friends and make international connections for life. Make the most of your university experience, explore and get involved in one of the many clubs and societies the university has to offer. I know for most international students the priority is to graduate with excellent grades and a foreign degree, but make sure you also use this time to broaden your horizons and get out of your comfort zone. Best of luck!