How Living Abroad Changed My Life
Today, we will be starting a new series of post. These post will be all about the process of applying for a PhD or doctorate degree. While I have not been accepted (yet) and my application is in process, I want to start documenting my adventure and some points and mistakes I have made that you can avoid.
Applying for a PhD is actually more stressful than I thought, specially when you want to specialise on a topic not that popular in terms of how many professors are out there in the UK for my field. I specialise in the memory and history of the Spanish Civil War and how it was and is commemorated throughout Spain. On top of not finding many supervisor on my field, I also have another criteria: there has to be a International Christian Church in the town that I go. For my masters, I went to Newcastle University, and the closest church was 6 hours away by bus (which was the cheapest mean of transportation). And while I got a merit in both my dissertation and on my degree, I believe I could have done much better if I had a church in my university town. So, this time I will make sure to be as close to a church as I can. Meaning finding a supervisor in a very small pool of supervisors.
I send emails to about 7 supervisors who specialise in Spanish history of some sort. It has taken me months between researching schools and looking for supervisors that are first in my field, and secondly, that are willing to supervise me. After months of searches, I found a supervisor at a university where there is one of my churches. I praise God that he made this possible, for without Him it would not be possible. God also made possible for me to be able to write a good research proposal in a good amount of time.
Writing a research proposal deserves its own post, so I will make a video blog and a post about it. It will be it’s own post because it is so critical for you to have a plan on a thesis statements that you will develop into a proposal, and later project.
So, in conclusion, what you can take from this post is to PLAN AHEAD OF TIME! Always plan everything make timelines, keep a journal with notes, keep a calendar, and always flag emails from professors and universities you are interested in.
So I hope you look forward to this blog series!
All the love!!
Here are the Do and Don’t of Studying Abroad! With Pictures!!!!!!!
Travelling is an essential part of studying abroad. You study abroad for the reason of getting to know new cultures and new parts of the world. So, TRAVEL, and get to know the country you are studying abroad or even the continent as I did!
Don’t: Stay in your room all day.
Unless you are sick, DO NOT STAY IN YOUR ROOM ALL DAY! It will hinder your experience as a study abroad student. I know some day I would have my down days and stay in all day, and all it did was make me feel worst. So, go shopping, enjoy your town, get coffee and brownies with friends, do something, anything outside to keep you out of your room!
Do: Meet new people in societies.
Some of my best friends while I was studying abroad I met them in my seminars. Do the same, go to specialty seminars, societies, extracurricular activities, any kind of club that is instructive, even go to the gym. Making friends while you study and exploring town with them will make your trip more memorable than without them.
Don’t: Isolate yourself.
I have done that before. I did it on the week of New Years Eve and it was the worst mistake ever. I should have stayed with friends and enjoyed my time. Isolating yourself will do you no good while you are studying abroad. Isolation will just lead to depression and you definitely do not want that.
Do: Take vitamins.
TAKE YOUR VITAMINS! Seriously, you will get sick at some point and that last thing you want is a weak immune system. So plain and simple, take care of yourself.
Don’t: Wait too long to make a GP/Doctor’s appointment.
Everything I got sick, and I got sick a lot, I always waiting until the last minute to make a GP appointment and ended up having to go to an urgent care clinic. Do yourself a favor and if you need to see the doctor because your meds are low make that appointment ASAP!
Do: Get to know your city or town.
Seriously, get to know your city or town. It is essential for your personal growth. Getting to know your city will help you feel more at ease and familiar with your new home. Whether you are studying abroad for the summer, a semester or a year or two, make sure to know the place you live in.
Don’t: Go to the library at noon.
Everyone has the same idea of going in between classes. Do yourself a favor and go after 4 pm or before 10:30 anything between that time will get you no computers and very long lines for everything.
Do: Do your assignments.
I cannot make this more clear. DO YOUR WORK! You went there to study. Then, STUDY!
Don’t: Leave your essay for the week of.
I cannot make this point more important then this: DO YOUR WORK AHEAD OF TIME! Do not leave your work for the last minute, you might be able to pass it one time but not always so give yourself plenty of time to finish your work.
Do: Pack lightly.
You do not need 3 bag to move anywhere unless you are moving to a 3rd world country and even then. Don’t make the mistake I make and pack lightly!
Do: ENJOY YOUR TIME ABROAD!
This is the most important lesson of all. ENJOY YOUR TIME ABROAD. No matter what country you are going to live or are already living in, make sure to enjoy every second of it, take photos and make memories!
Let’s get straight to it! 6 things to do in Edinburgh!
Go by train to Edinburgh, its much cooler and enjoyable !
Have coffee with your friends
Walk the Royal Mile and complaint the whole way!
Take pictures from the top of Edinburgh
Go into Edinburgh Castle and take silly pictures
Go around the city trying to find food and find a nice pub
End of story LOL jk Just go an enjoy the world. Don’t have a plan, but have a plan. Always have a map and bring plenty of water, good trainers and a nice sweater vest.
All the love!
Back in the spring of 2013, I moved to Nottingham to study history and politics at University of Nottingham. There I made some of my best friends. Those 5 months changed my life, and gave me a purpose (pre-Jesus) in life.
That brought me to Newcastle in 2016.
What a year it was from September 2016 to September 2017! I had just been baptized into Christ and I was moving away to a town 7 hours by bus away from the nearest church. That’s where my convictions grew strong. I knew I needed to go to church. To the kingdom, not just any church. So I traveled 6 to 7 hours each way every weekend to attend church. But never-mind that. I will leave this for another post.
I want to talk about my post grad studies in Newcastle University.
Newcastle University is located in the Northeast of England near the coast. The city itself, Newcastle upon Tyne, its beautiful to say the least. Pretty architecture, full of Georgian buildings.
Studying at Newcastle Uni was an experience to say the least. My program as a Master of Arts in European History. A program designed for students wanting to study European History from the 1600s to now.
At first I was going to focus on Phillip II of Spain and the Spanish Armada. However during my seconds semester in February after a magnificent seminar with Dr. Alex Quiroga, I decided to focus on the Spanish Civil War. Within a month, I had a research proposal done about the historiography of the Spanish Civil War, and was getting supervised by Alex.
Throughout my process, I had the opportunity to visit Madrid and Salamanca in order to do further investigations on the historiography of the Spanish Civil War.
My experience as a postgraduate student in Newcastle gave me lots of joy and great experiences that I will never forget. Not only did I met new people, I also ate new foods, visited new places, and did something that was only in my dreams: get a Masters degree!\
What a time to be alive! Explore the world! Get to know new people! Eat everything! Know that Jesus is Lord!
God is good! And I am forever in debt to him!
All the best!!